Response of Groundnut (Arachis hypogaea Linn.) to Sodium Chloride Salinity in a Semi-Arid Area of Northeastern Nigeria
*O.A. Folorunso, A.M. Chiroma and D. Abdullahi
Department of Soil Science, University of Maiduguri, Nigeria.
*Corresponding author. email: email@example.com
Accepted in January 2004.
The effect of NaC1 salinity on the yield components, plant nutrient concentrations and water use efficiency of groundnut under field conditions was investigated. Three salinity levels, viz., 0.75, 3.06 and 5.76 dS/m designated as Control (SO), (S1) and (S2), respectively were imposed with four replications. Nodulation was reduced by 45 and 69 percent in S1 and S2 treatments, respectively. Although kernel yield was not significantly affected by salinity, haulm yield was reduced by 23 and 41 percent at S1 and S2 treatment levels, respectively. Insensitivity of kernel yield to treatment effect was partly explained by higher pod damage by termites under the control treatment (55%) compared to the S1 and S2 treatments, which suffered 11 and 7 percent damage, respectively. Salinity appreciably increased C1 concentration in most plant parts. Kernel water use efficiency in the S1 and S2 treatments was reduced by 21 and 45 percent respectively. The results of the study have shown, perhaps for the first time, that effective control of certain pests, especially soil pests, may be an incidental benefit of high salinity.