Document Type : Research Paper
Resilient Dryland Systems, International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), Patancheru-502324, Andhra Pradesh, India.
With growing environmental and energy concerns, Jatropha plantations are
promoted in degraded/waste lands for the biodiesel production. Nutrient rich nonedible
deoiled seed cake, a by-product of Jatropha left out after oil extraction was
evaluated at the ICRISAT centre at Patancheru, India as an environment friendly
source of nutrients for rainy season maize and soybean followed by postrainy
chickpea in rainfed systems. Deoiled cake as partial (50%) or full replacement of
recommended basal nitrogen (N) was found superior in terms of increased crop
yield over the equivalent chemical fertilizers treatments. Highest yield and net
returns under full replacement of basal N for maize, while under 50% basal N
replacement in case of soybean and chickpea crops were recorded by 8 to 27% in
grain yield and 10 to 28% in straw yield. Deoiled Jatropha cake as a full
replacement of N dose in maize also recorded higher N uptake and use efficiency
in maize than chemical N source treatment along with increased organic C and
nutrient contents in post-harvest soil samples. This study revealed the benefits of
Jatropha deoiled seed cake as a good source of plant nutrients and soil organic C in
the semi-arid tropics in addition to enhanced C sequestration under Jatropha
plantation on degraded waste lands.
Keywords: Integrated nutrient management; Jatropha seed cake; Organic manure;
Sustainable production; Resilience building.