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Research Articles

Effects of Different Additives on the Quality of Composts Produced from Ordinary Garden Leaf Litter

Author:

S. R. Rajika Amarasinghe

University of Ruhuna, Kamburupitiya, 81100, LK
About S. R.
Department of Soil Science, Faculty of Agriculture
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Abstract

Disposal and proper management of garden waste in urban and semi-urban areas of Sri Lanka has become a problem due to several constraints. As an effective solution, production of compost by garden waste and other amendments can be introduced to home gardening. Further, it is vital to produce good quality compost to ensure the nutrient supply to the plant growth in home gardening. Hence, the ordinary leaf litter with high C:N ratio is necessary to supplement with other amendments to produce compost and reduce the C:N ratio. Therefore, the objectives of the present study were (i) to characterize the final composts after incorporating different amendments to leaf litter (ii) to find the best compost mixture leading to recommended level of C:N ratio for end use. By applying a mixing formula, five amendments were mixed keeping a constant weight of dry leaf litter; (i) dry leaf litter + Gliricidia leaves (Gliricidia sepium), (ii) dry leaf litter + Siam weed (Chromolaena odorata), (iii) dry leaf litter + cattle manure, (iv) dry leaf litter + spent poultry layer litter/poultry manure, and (v) dry leaf litter + urea. Only leaf litter compost was prepared as a control. Chemical properties of different composts were investigated and compared after 90 days of composting. The characterization included pH, EC, NH4+-N, NO3-- N and C:N ratio, available P, available K using standard analytical methods. The results were compared with the indices given by Sri Lanka standard (SLS) institute. According to the results chemical properties of final composts were largely varied with the type of initial raw materials used. The pH, EC were within the standard levels of compost. Different composts and control (un-amended) differed significantly (p<0.05) from each other regarding the NH4+-N, NO3--N, available P and K values. Further, considering the standards of C:N ratio, Gliricidia and cattle manure were recommended as the best amendments to mix with ordinary leaf litter.
How to Cite: Amarasinghe, S.R.R., 2022. Effects of Different Additives on the Quality of Composts Produced from Ordinary Garden Leaf Litter. Tropical Agricultural Research and Extension, 25(1), pp.23–33. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/tare.v25i1.5475
Published on 07 Apr 2022.
Peer Reviewed

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