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Effects of spacing on the yield and yield related parameters of potato (solanum tuberosum l.) At bale highland

Guta Eshetu Gemmechu*

Oromia Agricultural Research Institute, Sinana Agricultural Research Center, Ethiopia

Corresponding Author:
Guta Eshetu Gemmechu
Oromia Agricultural Research Institute
Sinana Agricultural Research Center
Ethiopia
E-mail: [email protected]

Received: February 15, 2021; Accepted: March 02, 2021; Published: March 12, 2021

Citation: GemmechuI GE (2021) Effects of spacing on the yield and yield related parameters of potato (Solanum Tuberosum l.) At bale highland. J Plant Sci Agri Res Vol.5 No.1:55

 
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Abstract

Field experiment was conducted at Sinana, Goba and Upper Dinsho to determine effects of spacing on the yield and yield related parameters of potato varieties. The treatments of the experiment were three levels of spacing between plants (30 cm, 35 cm and 40 cm), three levels of spacing between rows (75 cm, 85 cm and 95 cm) and two varieties (Ararsa and Gudane). There were a total of 18 treatments. Each treatment replicates three times. The experiment was laid down with randomized complete block design (RCBD). Plant growth parameters such as plant height, number of stem per plant, number of hill per plot and yield related parameters such as number of tuber per hill, number of marketable tuber per plot, number of unmarketable tuber per plot, weight of marketable tuber per plot and weight of unmarketable tuber per plot was collected. Additionally, total tuber yield per plot was also recorded. All recorded data were inserted to GenStat computer software, and analyzed to determine the effects of treatments on selected parameters. Accordingly, potato growth parameters such as plant height, number of stem per hill are significantly (p<0.05) affected by variety and location. Plant height significantly affected by the interaction effects of spacing between plants with location and variety. All yield component parameters except number of tuber per hill significantly affected by spacing between plants and rows as well as their interaction with other factors. Consequently, the highest number of hill per plot (12.76), the highest number of marketable tuber per plot (71.3), the lowest weight of unmarketable tuber (760.2 g.) was recorded in response to 30 cm spacing between plants. On the other hand, the maximum number of hill per plot (13.8), the highest number of marketable tuber per plot (70.63), the maximum mean weight of marketable tuber (8660 g.), the highest number of unmarketable tuber per plot (40.5) and the maximum mean weight of unmarketable tuber per plot (1080 g.) was recorded from plots established using 75 cm spacing between rows. The highest tuber yield was obtained in response to 30 cm spacing between plants and 75 cm spacing between rows. The result of analysis showed different ways of response of parameters to factors. Gudane variety gives the highest weight of marketable tuber per plot and the highest tuber yield in response to 40 cm x 75 cm spacing between plants and rows. However, Ararsa variety gives the maximum number of tuber per hill, maximum marketable tuber, the highest weight of marketable tuber, the lowest weight of unmarketable tuber and the highest tuber yield at 30 cm x 75 cm spacing between plants and rows. Therefore, Potato producing farmers are recommended to use 40 cm x 75cm, 30 cm x 75 cm spacing between plants and rows for Gudane and Ararsa varieties, respectively.

Keywords

Spacing; Rows; Hill; Tuber per plot; Tuber yield

Introduction

Potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) is the fourth largest crop next to Wheat, Rice and Maize [1]. It is an important source of food and employment in developing countries. Potato crop was first introduced to Ethiopia around 1858 by Schimper, a German botanist [2]. However, its adoption was limited until nineteenth century due to genetically very limited availability of potato varieties and their susceptibility to diseases and pests [3]. The occurrence of a prolonged famine, which happened at the end of the nineteenth century, rapidly increases potato adoption in Ethiopia [4]. Therefore, it is being used as hunger alleviating crop because of early maturity than other crops. According to CSA data of 2010 E.C, 66,923.33 ha of land was covered by potato and 9,214,031.85 Quintals of potato were produced annually (CSA, 2016/2017).

Potato crop needs intra and inter row spacing. Enough spacing allowed maximum tillering growth of the plant and better quality tuber formation. For potato producing areas of Ethiopia 30 cm and 75 cm spacing are recommended between plants and between rows respectively [5,6] reported that tuber expansion is affected by spacing as the surrounding soil volume becomes insufficient to hold the expanding masses of tubers in addition to competitions from imposed by nearby planted crops. Other study at Ofla wereda, Northern Ethiopia conducted on inter and intra row spacing determined and recommended 20 cm spacing between plants and 65 cm spacing between rows for the highest tuber yield about 37.54 ton ha-1 [7]. Additionally, research done at Guji zone southern Ethiopia also recommended different spacing between plants and rows for potato production. The Author recommended 30 cm × 75 cm spacing between plants and rows to obtain a marketable tuber yield of about 42.57 t ha-1 at Guji zone southern Ethiopia [8]. These two different spacing recommendations may due to different morphological characteristics of potato varieties which lead to conduct research to determine other spacing for best production for other varieties.

Different varieties may need different inter and intra row spacing, since their morphological characteristics are different. This indicates that recommendation for one potato variety may not applicable for other varieties vary in morphological appearance. Therefore, this experiment was proposed with the following objectives:

• To determine the optimum spacing between plants for different varieties of potato production

• To determine the optimum spacing between rows for different varieties potato production

Materials and Methods

Description of study area

This experiment was conducted at Goba, Upper Dinsho and Sinana district for three consecutive years. Goba is one of the highland district of Bale zones, Oromia Regional state 445 km far from Finfine (Addis Ababa) capital city of Ethiopia and 15 km from Robe the capital town of Bale zone at South East direction. It is located between 390 37’ 30’’-400 12’ 00’’E and 6°38’ 0’’-7° 4’ 0’’ N. About 45% of this District is rugged or mountainous; Mount Tullu Demtu is the highest point in this District, the Zone and the Oromia Region; other important peaks include Mount Batu. Rivers include the Togona and Shaya. A survey of the land in this District shows that 13% is arable or cultivable, 27.6% pasture, 54.6% forest, and the remaining 4.8% is considered as unusable [9]. Goba District has two types of rainfall regime. The long rainy season extends from March to April with high rain fall during June, July and August. The altitude of the District ranges from 1500 m.a.s.l-4377 m.a.s.l and the temperature varies from some times less than 0°C-23°C. The major soil types are Chromic and Pellic Vertisols in some parts, Chromic, Orthic and Vertic Luvisols around highlands and plateaus areas [9]. Dinsho district is part of the formerly known Sinana-Dinsho district. The altitude of this woreda ranges from 2000 m.a.s.l-3600 m.a.s.l. A survey of the land in this district showed that 33.1% is arable or cultivable where 29.8% was under Annual crops, 30.4% pasture, 30.2% forest or heavy vegetation and the remaining 2.3% is considered as swampy, mountainous or unusable. SARC is found at 463 km away from Finfine, 33 km and 50 km from the nearby towns, Robe and Goba, respectively. Its geographic location is 07°07’ N latitude and 40° 10’E longitude. The elevation of the center is 2400 m.a.s.l. with topography of gentle slope to plain, which has beautiful scene for vision and is quite conducive for agricultural production system under rain-fed in the present climatic conditions.

Experimental design and treatments

The experiment was conducted using Randomized Complete Block design with three replications of each treatment. The treatments of the experiments were three levels of spacing between plants (30 cm, 35 cm and 40 cm) and three levels of spacing between rows (75 cm, 85 cm and 95 cm). Two varieties namely Gudane and Ararsa were used for this experiment. There were a total number of 18 treatments. The seed of potato used for this experiment were obtained from Sinana Agricultural Research center. Gudane was adapted variety whereas Ararsa was released from SARC. All other agronomic practices were done according to the recommendation for all treatments.

Methods of land preparation and planting

Land preparation was done with plough thoroughly by traditional land cultivation. The prepared land was leveled to be suitable for plant establishment. Planting was done using different spacing between plants and rows during the month of March in 2017 at Goba and Sinana districts of Bale zone. Medium sized tuber of potato was used. Additionally, scientifically recommended amount of both UREA and DAP fertilizer was used for establishment of experiment.

Collected data

Plant height: The measurement in meters from the bottom of the plant to the tip of potato plant.

Number of hill per plot: The amount of plant grown from the planted tubers

Number of stem per hill: The average number of stem grew up from one planted tuber

Number of tuber per hill: Is the average number of tubers obtained one single planted tuber

Number of marketable tuber per plot: Is the average number of marketable tubers and was recorded by counting tubers which was not green and very small based on visual inspection

Weight of marketable tuber per plot: Is the average weight of tubers counted as marketable tubers

Number of unmarketable tuber per plot: Is the average number of tubers which was exposed to sunlight changed their color to green and very small identified by visual inspection

Weight of unmarketable tuber per plot: The average weight of tubers which was counted as unmarketable tubers

Total yield per hectare: Is the sum of weight of marketable tuber and weight of unmarketable tuber. It was recorded by converting to weight per hectare

Data analysis and interpretation

All data were subjected GenStat 15th Edition computer software and analyzed to determine the significant effects of treatments on selected parameters. LSD was used for mean separation at 5% level of significance using DMRT. Then the result of analysis was interpreted accordingly.

Result and Discussion

Effects of spacing between plants and rows on potato growth parameters

Analysis of variance showed that the main effects of spacing between plants showed non-significant (p<0.05) effects on plant height of potato at Goba, Upper Dinsho and SARC research station. Similarly, the spacing between rows had no significant effects of plant height at Upper Dinsho and SARC research station (Table 1). This may due to the less competition among plants for nutrients, air and moisture. The result is in line with the finding reported by [10] as spacing between plants has no significant effects on plant height of potato. However, at Goba experimental site the spacing between rows significantly affected plant height of the crop. Accordingly, the longest plant was obtained from plots with 75 cm spacing between rows. In fact, the plants with lower space between rows compete more for sunlight and increases their height to get sun for synthesis processes [11] also reported as the closely spaced potato gives maximum plant height. On the other hand, number of stem per hill was significantly affected by spacing between plants at SARC research site. Accordingly, the maximum number of stem per hill (3.37) was obtained from plots with 35 cm spacing between plants. The minimum mean number of stem per hill (2.42) was recorded for plots established with 30 cm spacing between plants at particular site. However, number of stem per hill was not significantly affected by spacing between plants at Goba and Upper Dinsho research site. Number of stem per hill was also not significantly affected by spacing between rows at Goba and SARC research station but significantly affected by the spacing between rows at Upper Dinsho research site.

Table 1: The main effects of spacing between plants, and rows on the growth parameters of potato at Goba, Upper Dinsho and SARC on station

Treatments Means of selected growth parameters by Location                    
SPBP Plant height (cm)     Number of stem per hill                
  Goba Upper Dinsho SARC station Goba     Upper Dinsho     SARC  station    
30 39.48a 45.96a 50.38a 4.10a     5.72a     2.42bc    
35 38.44a 45.24a 47.53a 3.98a     5.18a     3.37a    
40 38.67a 45.32a 50.46a 4.133a     5.16a     2.67b    
Means 38.86 45.51 49.46 4.07     5.35     2.8    
CV (%) 9.3 5 8.7 22.7     24.2     34.6    
LSD (0.05) NS NS NS NS     NS     0.66*    
SPBR                        
75 39.91a 45.04a 50.58a 4.07a     6.01a     2.50a    
85 39.55a 46.32a 47.74a 3.96a     4.92ab     2.97a    
95 37.13b 45.16a 50.04a 4.19a     5.12a     2.93a    
Means 38.86 45.51 49.46   4.07     5.35     2.8  
CV (%)  9.3 5 8.7     22.7     24.2     34.6
LSD (0.05) 2.44* NS NS     NS     0.88*      

Table 2: Effects of Location on the mean number of stem per hill

Location Mean number of stem per hill
SARC On station 5.352a
Goba 4.07 b
Upper Dinsho 2.80c
CV (%) 31
LSD(0.05) 0.4813

On the other hand, the combined analysis indicated that the interaction effects of spacing between plants and rows for both varieties have no significant effects on plant height and average number of stems per hill of the crop at all location. The result is supported by [8] where non-significant effects of the interaction effects of spacing between plants and rows on plant height were reported. However, there was highly significant (p<0.01) variation among the mean number of stem per hill due to location and variety. Accordingly, the maximum number of stem per hill (5.35) was obtained from experiment established at Upper Dinsho where the minimum mean number of stem (2.8) was obtained from Sinana On station. The variation may due to different environmental factors like soil fertility, moisture content of the soil, humidity and sun light. Variety Ararsa showed lowest number of stem per hill (3.49) than Gudane Variety (4.66). The difference may due to genetic variation among the varieties.

Response of potato growth parameters to spacing between plants and rows were determined. There is no significant variation among the mean plant height for both varieties due to treatments (Table 3). However, there is variation among the mean of the parameters of the varieties. This may due to genetic variation among the varieties.

Table 3: Responses of plant growth parameters to spacing between plants and rows of two potato varieties

Treatments Means of selected growth parameters of Varieties
Spacing between plants Plant height (cm) Number of stem per hill
Gudane Ararsa Gudane Ararsa
30 48.13a 42.41b 4.69a  3.47b
35  46.56a  40.93a 4.72a 3.59b
40 48.11a  41.52b  4.56a 3.41b
Means 44.61 4.01
CV (%) 8.1 31
LSD (0.05) NS NS
Spacing between rows
75 48.15a 42.21b 4.91a 3.47b
85 47.99a 41.09b 4.39a 3.50b
95 46.67a 41.55b 4.67a 3.49b
Mean 44.61 4.01
CV (%) 8.1 31
LSD (0.05) NS NS

Yield components of Potato as influenced by spacing between plants and rows

Analysis of variance done over location indicated that number of hill per plot was significantly (p<0.05) affected by spacing between plants and rows at SARC on station research site. Similar to this, at Goba experimental site number of hill per plot was significantly affected by spacing between rows. As a result, the maximum number of hill per plot (15.5, 16.78) was recorded in response to 30 cm spacing between plants and 75 cm spacing between rows respectively at SARC research station. The relative maximum number of hill per plot (12.94) was recorded for plots established using 75 cm spacing between rows at Goba. On the other hand, the mean minimum number of hill per plot (11.44, 9.39) were obtained from plots established with 40 cm spacing between plants, 85 cm spacing between rows at Sinana and 95 cm spacing between rows at Goba. At both location as spacing between plants and rows increased the mean number of hill per plot decreased. This may due to the exposure of the soil to moisture evaporation which causes moisture stress then reduction in number of hill per plot. At Upper Dinsho experimental site number of hill per plot was not significantly affected by spacing between plants and rows.

The main effects of spacing between plants and rows showed no significant effects on number of tuber per hill at all location. In spite of that, there were significant effects of spacing between plants on the mean number of marketable tuber per plot at upper Dinsho experimental site. Accordingly, the highest number of marketable tuber per plot (82.94) was recorded for plots established with 30 cm spacing between plants and the lowest number of marketable tuber per plot (54.11, 60.06) were obtained from plots established using 35 cm and 40 cm spacing between plants at specified location. However, number of marketable tuber per plot was not significantly (p<0.05) affected by spacing between plants at Sinana and Goba research site. The main effects of spacing between rows on number of marketable tuber per plot was significantly high (p<0.01) at Sinana and Goba research site. Consequently, the highest number of marketable tuber per plot was recorded for plots established using closest spacing while the lowest number marketable tuber per plot was obtained from plots with wider spacing between rows. Accordingly, the maximum number of marketable tuber per plot (96, 46.56) was recorded in response to 75 cm spacing between rows at Sinana and Goba respectively. The number of marketable tuber per plot recorded for the closest plots were 32% and 28% greater than that of the medium and wider spacing between rows. The variation among the mean number of marketable tuber per plot may due to difference in the fertility level of soil and other environmental factors among the locations.

Weight of marketable tuber per plot was significantly (p<0.05) affected by spacing between plants and rows at SARC experimental site. The result indicated that increasing the spacing between plants and rows decreases weight of marketable tuber per plot. In fact, increasing spacing between plants and rows than the optimum amount may expose the soil for moisture loss which indirect reduces the weight of marketable tuber of potato. Contrary, the mean weight of marketable tuber per plot at upper Dinsho didn’t significantly affected by the spacing between plants and rows. The reason may availability of moisture and plant nutrients for growth and tuber development of potato which reduces the competition among plants.

Analysis of variance for the mean number of unmarketable tuber per plot was also done. At Goba and Upper Dinsho experimental site, number of unmarketable tuber per plot was significantly (p<0.05) affected by spacing between plants and rows. In similar manner spacing between rows significantly affected number of unmarketable tuber per plot at SARC research station. The result showed that, increasing the spacing between plants and rows decreases the mean number of unmarketable tuber per plot. It is phenomenon that at optimum spacing between plants and rows potato gives the maximum number of tubers including marketable and unmarketable which are under sized as well as exposed to sun light. Therefore, the mean number of unmarketable tuber per plot for optimum spacing between rows may result in higher number of unmarketable tuber per plot. The result is in line with the finding of Kinde Lamessa, who reported maximum number of marketable and unmarketable tuber at 20 cm × 50 cm spacing between plants and rows.

Weight of unmarketable tuber per plot was significantly affected by spacing between plants at Upper Dinsho but not at SARC and Goba experimental site. According to the result, increasing spacing between plants increases the weight of unmarketable tuber per plot (Table 4). In fact, at wider spacing between plants there will be exposure of soil for moisture loss and the weight of unmarketable tuber will be high due to the unfavorable environmental condition for tuber development. On the other hand, since the condition enhances the crop to produce high number of under sized tubers the weight of unmarketable tuber per plot will be increased.

Table 4: Effects of spacing between plants and rows on the yield components of potato at SARC on station, Goba and Upper Dinsho

SPBP Means of selected yield components parameters by location
SARC On station Goba Upper Dinsho
  NHPP NTPH NMTPP WMTPP NUMTPP WUMTPP NHPP NTPH NMTPP WMTPP NUMTPP WUMTPP NHPP NTPH NMTPP WMTPP NUMTPP WUMTPP
30 15.50a 7.56 a 90.61a 10.64a 41.50a 0.68a 11.39a 5.22a 40.28a 3.10a 16.28a 0.22a 11.39a 11.93a 82.94a 8.78a 48.06a 1.38b
35 12.89b 8.23a 77.33a 8.78ab 41.72a 0.77a 10.72a 4.99a 34.67a 2.90a 13.83ab 0.17a 11.61a 10.76a 54.11b 6.71a 31.67b 1.31b
40 11.44b 7.82a 75.33a 7.97b 35.67a 0.65a 9.89a 4.68a 35.94a 2.88a 11.33b 0.169a 11.83a 11.08a 60.06b 12.29a 47.72a 2.46a
Mean 13.28 7.87 81.1 9.13 39.65 0.7 10.67 4.96 37 2.96 13.81 0.19 11.61 11.26 65.7 9.26 42.5 1.72
CV (%) 14.8 20.6 23.6 33 26 29.4 27.5 21.1 24.2 26.2 39.9 28.4 27.5 22.4 24.3 27.2 23.7 29.2
LSD(0.05) 1.33** NS NS 0.71* NS NS NS NS NS NS 3.36* NS NS NS 19.71* NS 15.46* 0.81**
Spacing between rows
75 16.78a 7.53a 96.00a 10.69a 51.22a 0.92a 12.94a 5.00a 46.56a 3.46a 17.17a 0.24a 11.94a 11.60a 69.33a 11.84a 53.00a 2.09a
85 11.44b 8.22 a 72.56b 7.78b 36.50b 0.60b 9.67b 4.78a 33.17b 2.77b 11.89b 0.17b 10.61a 11.72a 68.67a 8.27a 39.78ab 1.40a
95 11.61b  7.8a  a 74.72b 8.92ab 31.17b 0.58b 9.39b 5.11a 31.17b 2.65b 12.39b 0.15b 12.28a 10.44a 59.11a 7.68a 34.67b 1.67a
Mean 13.28 7.87 81.1 9.13 39.65 0.7 10.67 4.96 37 2.96 13.81 0.19 11.61 11.26 65.7 9.26 42.5 1.72
CV (%) 14.8 20.6 23.6 33 26 29.4 27.5 21.1 24.2 26.2 29.9 28.4 27.5 22.4 24.3 27.2 23.7 29.2
LSD(0.05) 1.33** NS 12.96** 2.034* 9.65** 0.23* 1.99** NS 6.06** 0.53** 3.36** 0.055** NS NS NS NS 15.46* NS

In the same manner, spacing between rows had significantly (p<0.05) influenced the weight of unmarketable tuber per plot at SARC research station and Goba experimental site but not at Upper Dinsho. At both locations the highest weight of unmarketable tuber per plot was recorded for plots with closest spacing between rows. The wide spacing between rows than the optimum amount may prevent the crop not only to produce marketable tuber but also to produce unmarketable tuber by exposing the crop for moisture stress which in turn causes yield losses. The result contradicts with the finding of where the highest unmarketable tuber at 55 cm × 25 cm spacing between rows and plants was reported. The contradiction of the results may due the variety used and environmental factors among the two experimental sites. Different varieties may need different spacing for their growth and tuber development.

Analysis of variance indicated that except number of hill per plot and number of stem per plant all yield component parameters were significantly (p<0.05) affected by spacing between plants and rows. Average number of marketable tuber per plot decreases as spacing between plants and rows increases for both varieties. Both varieties gave the maximum number of marketable tuber per plots at 30 cm × 75 cm spacing between plants and rows. The number of marketable tubers obtained from plots with 30 cm × 75 cm spacing between plants and rows are 70.55% and 77.64% higher than the widest plots for Ararsa and Gudane variety, respectively. This indicates the importance of closest spacing in conserving moisture needed for tuber growth and development.

Table 5: The interaction effects of spacing the yield components of potato varieties

SPBP SPBR VAR Means of selected yield components parameters          
      NHPP NSPPP NMTPP NUMTPP WMTPP WUMTPP
30 75 A 14.78ab 8.33ab 60.33cde 28.44cd 8.29ab 0.51b
    G 16.11a 8.71ab 83.33ab 69.78a 8.39ab 1.25ab
  85 A 10.22ef 8.24ab 56.67cde 27.44cd 6.49abc 4.79b
    G 11.89cdef 8.58ab 74.56bc 33.11bcd 7.99abc 6.66b
  95 A 11.89bcdef 8.04ab 53.89cde 26.11cd 6.17bc 8.59b
    G 11.67cdef 7.51ab 72.78bcd 26.78cd 7.72abc 7.99b
35 75 A 12.78bcde 7.00b 46.44e 32.44bcd 6.74abc 7.40b
    G 14.33abc 8.867ab 83.67ab 46.44b 7.03abc 9.64b
  85 A 9.89ef 7.067b 44.33e 25.78cd 6.74abc 8.067b
    G 11.00def 9.42a 64.22bcde 39.33bc 6.07bc 7.17b
  95 A 11.56cdef 7.289ab 42.56e 25.33cd 6.28bc 7.15b
    G 10.89def 8.31ab 51.00de 24.22cd 5.87bc 5.59b
40 75 A 12.00bcdef 7.96ab 58.11cde 32.78bcd 7.4abc 1.866a
    G  13.33bcd 7.40ab 100.67a 20.22d 9.60a 1.15ab
  85 A 9.44f 7.067b 45.11e 26.44cd 6.51abc 1.13ab
    G 11.00def 9.067ab 65.67bcde 32.89bcd 6.10bc 0.543b
  95 A 10.11ef 7.60ab 42.56e 22.00cd 5.35bc 0.79b
    G 10.44def 8.07ab 56.67cde 36.00bcd 4.86c 1.07b
Mean     11.85 8.03 61.3 32 6.87 0.87
CV (%)     22.8 23.7 33.9 28.6 30.9 27.5
LSD     NS NS 19.39* 14.52** 2.63* 0.71*

On the other hand, number of unmarketable tuber per plot was also significantly (p<0.05) influenced by spacing between plants and rows. Accordingly, as spacing between plants and rows increases from (30 cm-40 cm and 75 cm-95 cm); number of unmarketable tuber per plot increased for both varieties. As a result, the maximum number of unmarketable tuber per plot (32.78, 69.78) was recorded at 40 cm x 75 cm spacing for Ararsa variety and 30 cm x 75 cm spacing for Gudane variety. However, the minimum number of unmarketable tuber per plot (22 and 20.22) was recorded for plots with 40 cm x 95 cm spacing for Ararsa variety and 35 cm x 95 cm spacing for Gudane variety. Both varieties gave the maximum number of unmarketable tuber per plot at 95 cm spacing between rows. This showed as the widest spacing between rows influences number of unmarketable tuber per plot. This may due moisture loss of the soil which affects tuber initiation and development. On the other hand, increasing the spacing between rows than optimal may expose the soil to wind erosion, to lose moisture and nutrients. As a result, number of under sized and green tuber will be increased.

Analysis of variance showed that, weight of marketable tuber per plot was also significantly influenced by spacing between plants and rows. The response of both varieties to spacing between plants and rows is different. Accordingly; Ararsa variety give the maximum weight of marketable tuber per plot at 30 cm x 75 cm spacing between plants and rows whereas the maximum weight of marketable tuber per plot was recorded at 40 cm x 75 cm spacing between plants and rows for Gudane variety. For both varieties increasing spacing between rows decreases the weight of marketable tuber per plot. This may due to exposure of soil to moisture loss which contributed for marketable tuber weight reduction. Weight of unmarketable tuber per plot was also significantly affected by spacing between plants and rows. According to the result the mean weight of unmarketable tuber per plot increases as the spacing between plants and rows increases. In fact, if the spacing between rows increased than optimum spacing needed by the potato there will be exposure of land for wind which causes soil moisture and nutrient losses through evaporation. This directly influences the growth and development of potato and number of under sized and green tubers will be increased. However, both varieties had their own optimum spacing between plants at which they gave minimum weight of unmarketable tuber per plot. Accordingly, Ararsa variety gave the mean minimum weight of unmarketable tuber per plot at 30 cm x 75 cm spacing where, Gudane gives the minimum weight of unmarketable tuber per plot at 40 cm x 75 cm spacing between plants and rows. The variation among spacing between plants needed for these varieties may due to the variation in genetic morphological characteristics of the varieties.

Effects of Spacing between Plants and Rows on Tuber Yield of Potato (Solanum Tuberosum L.)

Analysis of variance indicated that tuber yield of potato is not significantly affected by spacing between plants at all locations. However, spacing between rows significantly affected tuber yield of the crop (p<0.05). Accordingly, increasing spacing between rows from 75 cm-95 cm decreases the tuber yield of potato 43.3 t ha-1 to 40.81 t ha-1. The tuber yield recorded for 85 cm par with the tuber yield recorded for 95 cm spacing between rows but significantly different from that of 75 cm spacing.

Table 6: Effects of Spacing on the yield of potato

Spacing between pants Mean tuber yield (t ha-1)
40 42.48a
30 41.92a
35 40.70a
Mean 41.7
CV (%) 11.7
LSD (0.05) NS
Spacing between rows
75 43.3a
85 41b
95 40.81b
Mean 41.7
CV (%) 11.7
LSD (0.05) 2.22*

Table 7: Effects of spacing on the tuber yield of different potato varieties at Bale

Mean Tuber Yield (t ha-1)  
Spacing between plants Spacing between rows Gudane Ararsa
30 75 43.17ab 42.72abc
  85 42.03abcd 40.50bcd
  95 42.37abcd 41.11bcd
35 75 41.68bcd 41.23bcd
  85 39.56d 41.29bcd
  95 40.48bcd 39.99cd
40 75 44.72a 42.59abcd
  85 40.81bcd 40.65bcd
  95 40.96bcd 41.08bcd
Mean     41.5
CV     6.6
LSD     2.57*

The spacing between plants and rows responded to this parameter in different ways. This indicates that both varieties need different spacing between plants and rows for tuber production and development. Accordingly, Ararsa variety gives the maximum tuber yield (42.72 t ha-1) at 30 cm x 75 cm spacing between plants and rows whereas Gudane variety gives the highest total tuber yield (44.72 t ha-1) at 40 cm x 75 cm spacing between plants and rows. This may due to the variation in morphological characteristics of the varieties.

Conclusion and Recommendation

Field experiment conducted at Sinana on station, Goba and Upper Dinsho for three consecutive years showed that different spacing between plants and rows responded to growth, yield components parameters and total tuber yield in different way. This may due to the genetic variation of the varieties which contributes for different morphological characteristics of the crop. Therefore, it was determined that different spacing between plants and rows required for tuber production and development.

To conclude Ararsa variety gives the highest number of marketable tuber per plot, the highest weight of marketable tuber per plot, the minimum number of marketable tuber per plot, the minimum weight of unmarketable tuber per plot and the highest tuber yield at 30 cm x 75 cm spacing between plants and rows. On the other hand, the maximum number of marketable tuber per plot, the highest weight of marketable tuber per plot, the lowest number of unmarketable tuber per plot, the highest weight of marketable tuber per plot and the highest tuber yield was recorded for Gudane variety at 40 cm x 75 cm spacing between plants and rows. Therefore, 30 cm x 75 cm and 40 cm x 75 cm spacing was recommended for Ararsa and Gudane variety producers respectively at the highlands of Bale.

References

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