Effect of Reed Grasses Treated Grey Water and Normal Water on Growth and Yield of Maize Crop



Reuse of grey water is gaining importance with the time because of multiple benefits. As safe disposal of wastewater has become one of the major problems in the countries like Pakistan. Through the reuse of grey water, the effluent will not only be safely disposed off, but it will be utilized for crop irrigation regularly. A study was conducted to observe the growth and yield of maize crop on grey water, treated grey water with three grass species including reed grass (Phragmites karka), reed mace (Typha elephantina), large sedge grass (Cyperus iria) and ground water. The reedbed system was installed at the Residential Colony of Sindh Agriculture University, Tandojam. The efficacy of reedgrass species and their effect on maize growth and production was evaluated. Results suggested that greater plant height (67.95 and 63.61 cm) and dry matter yield (26.47 and 22.35 g/pot) was recorded in maize crop irrigated with grey water passing P. karka and T. elephantina reed grass species, than C. iria specie. The untreated grey water was less useful as compared to normal irrigation water; while among reed grass species, the crop receiving grey water passing P. karka showed higher plant height and increased dry matter yield than the normal irrigation water as well as than T. elephantina and C. iria species. It is suggestible that P. karka showed most promising results in removal of grey water pollutants due to its dense tillering and morphological characteristics that treat the grey water effectively. The result for leaf N, P and K contents of maize irrigated with reedbed treated water indicated that leaf N content of maize was positively influenced by grey water irrigation. The untreated grey water resulted in the maximum leaf N content, followed by P. karka treated grey water; while almost equal leaf N content was observed in T. elephantina and C. iria treated grey water. Similar trends were observed in leaf P content of maize and it was positively and significantly affected by grey water irrigation. Untreated grey water resulted in maximum leaf P content, followed by P. karka and T. elephantina treated grey water; while the lowest leaf P content was observed under C. iria treated grey water. The leaf K content of maize was remarkably higher when the crop was irrigated with C. iria treated grey water, followed by T. elephantina treated grey water; while the lowest leaf K content was observed under P. karka treated grey water. On the basis of results on leaf K content of maize, it is suggested that C. iria grass could effectively be used for grey water recycling and to achieve crop higher leaf K content. The variation in nutrients showed association with the temperature variation during different months of the year as well as with the variation in the nutrient removal from grey water.

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