Organic medium enclosed trough system enhances the growth, yield and nutritional composition of Amaranth species
ID: 613 / 385
Proposed Symposium Title: Organic medium enclosed trough system enhances the growth, yield and nutritional composition of Amaranth species
Maeleletse G. Mopai1, Semakaleng Mpai1, Ashwell R. Ndhlala1
Affiliations: 1Department of Plant production, Soil Sciences and Agricultural EngineeringUniversity of Limpopo, Limpopo Province, South Africa
Amaranth species are a highly popular group of indigenous leafy vegetables (ILV) consumed in South Africa as relish. Amaranth is an under cultivated ILV, but grows voluntarily during rainy seasons. Climate change impacts on vegetable production has mandated farmers to resort to and develop sustainable, effective and efficient environmentally-friendly growing practices. The organic medium enclosed trough (OMET) system is an organic and non-drainable vegetable growing technique. The aim of the study was to investigate the effects of OMET system on growth and yield as well as nutritional composition of two Amaranth species: A. caudatus and A. cruentus. Data collected include seedling height, stem diameter and fresh biomass. The nutritional composition of Amaranth species determined after harvesting include % protein, macro- and micro-elements. The OMET system and showed the highest plant height, stem diameter, biomass, and some nutrients including %protein, Ca, P, Cu, Se, Zn in A. cruentus compared to A. caudatus. In contrast, A. caudatus was predominated by elements such Mg, K, Mn, and Fe. The OMET system utilized less water than the non-OMET system, making it a brilliant strategy to conserve water and utilize it sustainably, effectively and efficiently while producing significant biomass and nutritious crops. The OMET system can be regarded as a growing technique that can contribute to mitigate the climate change impacts on the production of vegetables.