Screening Onion (Allium cepa-L.) Varieties for Growth, Yield and Quality Attributes through Different Organic Management Conditions during Late Kharif Season of Jharkhand
The experiment has been conducted during late kharif season of the South Chhotanagpur plateau of Jharkhand during 2015 at the faculty centre of Integrated Rural & Tribal Development and Management, Ramakrishna Mission Vivekananda University, Morabadi, Ranchi. The experimental factors i.e. ten varieties viz. V1 (Sukhsagar); V2 (Agrifound Dark Red); V3 (Bhima Sweta); V4 (Bhima Subhra); V5 (Bhima Dark Red); V6 (Bhima Super); V7 (F1: BSS-258); V8 (Nasik Red); V9 (Arka Niketan); and V10 (N-53) of onion were subjected to screen under four different organic treatment conditions such as T1: Wood Ash @ 5 t.ha-1 and FYM @ 10 t.ha-1; T2: Wood Ash @ 5 t.ha-1 and FYM @ 10 t.ha-1 + Shasyagavya (15%) four times at 15 days’ intervals starting from 15 days after transplanting + mulching with dry paddy straw; T3: Wood Ash @ 5 t.ha-1 and FYM @ 10 t.ha-1+ Biofertilizer (Azotobacter 3 kg.ha-1) + Shasyagavya (15%) four times at 15 days’ intervals starting from 15 days after transplanting + mulching with dry paddy straw and T4: Wood Ash @ 5 t.ha-1 and FYM @ 10 t.ha-1 + Biofertilizer (Azotobacter 3 kg.ha-1) + Shasyagavya (15%) four times at 15 days intervals starting from 15 days after transplanting + fermented mustard oil cake solution (10%) @ 15 days interval for 3 times starting from 21 days after transplanting + Panchagavya (5%) at 30 days, 45 days and 60 days after planting as foliar spray + mulching with dry paddy straw for detecting suitable variety/varieties for the late kharif season for the region. The experiment was designed after split plot RBD by employing ten varieties with their three replications each under four organic treatment conditions. From the above findings, it may be concluded that organically designed treatments and different varieties performed differently during late kharif season of the South Chhotanagpur plateau regions of Jharkhand. Results revealed that higher level of nutrient sources may not be always beneficial effects over the yield and quality of kharif onion. Hence, higher average yield was obtained from T2 [52.15 t.ha-1 (actual yield) but 41.72 t.ha-1 (projected yield: considering 20% less than the actual yield] followed by T3 [49.38 t.ha-1 (actual yield) but 39.51 t.ha-1 (projected yield)], T4 [44.13 t.ha-1 (actual yield) but 35.30 t.ha-1 (projected yield)], while the lowest was recorded in T1 [32.99 t.ha-1 (actual yield) but 26.39 t.ha-1 (projected yield)]. The results highlighted that increasing level of inputs through different organic interventions may not be associated with the higher yield of the crop. Thereby, higher yield was harnessed from T2 instead of T3 and T4 treatments. The outcomes also showed that bio-fertilizer (Azotobacter) may not be compatible with Panchagavya or even Shasyagavya. In other words it may be concluded that there may be some antagonistic effects in between the Azotobacter used in this study and the microbes present in organic liquid formulations like Panchagavya and Shasyagavya. However, one thing is clear that Shasyagavya and mulching materials have some positive effects over the yield of the crop. Thereby, higher yield was documented in T2 followed by T3 and T4 but not in T1 treatment. The findings also displayed that addition of mustard oil cake (in T4) has no surplus benefit over the yield of kharif onion. When varietal performance under the influence of four treatments was taken into account, then it was observed that V3 is the best in terms of yield [54.15 t.ha-1 (actual); 43.32 t.ha-1 (projected)] followed by V5 [51.48 t.ha-1 (actual); 41.18 t.ha-1 (projected)], V7 [50.86 t.ha-1 (actual); 40.69 t.ha-1 (projected)] and so on. The observation exhibited that V9 is the worst performing variety in terms of yield [36.09 t.ha-1 (actual); 28.87 t.ha-1 (projected)]. However, the interaction effect publicized that T2V3 is the best in terms of yield [66.53 t.ha-1 (actual); 53.22 t.ha-1(projected)] followed by T3V10 [62.65 t.ha-1 (actual); 50.12 t.ha-1 (projected)], T4V4 [62.31 t.ha-1 (actual); 49.85 t.ha-1 (projected)] culminated with the lowest performing combination in terms of yield in T1V9 [16.87 t.ha-1 (actual); 13.50 t.ha-1 (projected)]. In this backdrop, it may be concluded that not only the treatment but also the variety has some effect over the ultimate yield of the crop as it has already been proved that the genetic entity of the crop and growing environment determine the performance of the crop. Most of the cases, it was also exposed that yield and yield associated components have inverse relationship with the quality contributing characters of the crop. In this context, dry matter content was recorded highest in the case of V9 (16.22%), T1 (14.76%) and T3V1 (18.91%) combination as contrast to the lowest as recorded in V3 (12.10%), T2 (13.75%) and T3V3 (7.52%) combination. Similarly, when ascorbic acid content of onion bulb was taken into account, then it was revealed that V4 (30.64 mg.100g-1) is the best variety, T2 (21.82 mg.100g-1) is the best treatment, while T3V9 (40.40 mg.100g-1) emerged as the best treatment and varietal combination. The results on pungency of onion (in terms of pyruvic acid equivalent) was documented highest in V5 (94.67 µmol.100g-1) variety, T2 (75.17 µmol.100g-1) treatment and in the case of T1V5 (227.33 µmol.100g-1) treatment and varietal interaction. Such findings also established the hypothesis that both genetic entity and growing conditions determine the overall performance of a crop. When economics aspect in terms of benefit: cost ratio was taken into justification, then it was revealed that T2V3 (5.18) as the most profitable treatment and varietal combination followed by T3V10 (4.80), T2V8 (4.52), T2V5 (4.42) as against the lowest as recorded in T1V9 (1.35) combination.
From the above observations, it may be further concluded that in terms of yield V3 (Bhima Sweta), V5 (Bhima Dark Red), V7 (BSS-258), V4 (Bhima Subhra), V1 (Sukhsagar), V6 (Bhima Super) and V2 (Agrifound Dark Red) are suitable for late kharif season in Chhotanagpur plateau of Jharkhand. However, in terms of quality, it was observed that different varieties performed in a different way under the influence of organically designed treatments. But when treatment and varietal interaction as well as economics aspects were taken into account, then it was materialized that T2 is the most suitable organic treatment for growing above mentioned onion varieties during late kharif season in South Chhotanagpur plateau regions of Jharkhand.
Keywords: Onion; (Allium cepa L); onion varieties, organic farming; growth characters; yield parameters; quality attributes; pungency; mineral nutrients.