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Comparison of Assimilate Partitioning in Organically and Conventionally Grown Tea

Authors:

WGC Wekumbura ,

Department of Export Agriculture, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, LK
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AJ Mohotti,

Tea Research Institute, Talawakele, Sri Lanka, LK
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LP Vidhana Arachchi,

Department of Export Agriculture, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, LK
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KM Mohotti

Tea Research Institute, Talawakele, Sri Lanka, LK
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Abstract

The partitioning of assimilates were compared in organically and conventionally grown tea. Dry matter and nutrient partitioning was examined in 12-year old tea bushes cultivar DT1 of the 'TRI OR-CON' trial at St Coombs Estate, Talawakele. Three organic treatments were compared with conventional, inorganic management. Introduced organic treatments were tea waste, compost and Neem oil cake as soil amendments and managed according to International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements guidelines. The treatments were arranged according to Randomized Complete Block design with four replicates and bushes were carefully uprooted and dry matter and nutrient partitioning were studied in different parts. The highest amount of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium partitioning were found in the flush in all treatments compared to other parts of tea bushes. Organic treatments such as tea waste and Neem oil cake resulted the highest nitrogen content in flush as 4.06% and 4.05% respectively. Compost and conventional treatments showed lower nitrogen content of 3.59% and 3.56% respectively. However, the fallen leaves and branches also contained a certain amount of nutrients and that indicate the importance of fallen leaves as well as use of pruned residues for nutrient recycling. Dry matter partitioning was not significantly different in the above four treatments, whilst higher dry matter partitioning into stem part followed by root system and the lowest dry matter partitioning was observed in the leaf part of the bush. It is evident that partitioning of assimilates was similar in organically and conventionally managed tea bushes.

Key Words: Chemical fertilizer; Compost; Dry matter and nutrient partitioning; Neem Oil cake; Nutrient partitioning; Tea waste

DOI: 10.4038/jas.v5i1.2330

Journal of Agricultural Sciences Vol.5(1) 2010 pp.32-41

DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/jas.v5i1.2330
How to Cite: Wekumbura, W. et al., (2010). Comparison of Assimilate Partitioning in Organically and Conventionally Grown Tea. Journal of Agricultural Sciences. 5(1), pp.32–41. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/jas.v5i1.2330
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Published on 07 Oct 2010.
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