Bioconversion of agricultural waste and its efcient utilization in the hilly ecosystem of Northeast India

Authors

1 ICAR Research Complex for NEH Region

2 Tea Research Association

3 Assam Agricultural University

Abstract

Purpose A suitable strategy for bioconversion of agricultural waste into quality organic manure and its efcient utilization was assessed in the hilly ecosystem of Northeast India. Methods Pits were dug in terrace lands and flled with chopped plant biomass (rice straw, maize stover and mixed weed biomass) with alternate layers of cow dung at 3:2 ratio. The treatment consisting of control (plant biomass+cow dung), plant biomass+cow dung+earthworm (Eisenia fetida) (with or without poly lining in the pit) and plant biomass +cow dung+earthworm+cellulose-degrading microorganism (Pseudomonas sp.) (with or without poly lining in the pit) was used for the bioconversion process. Results Combined inoculation of E. fetida and Pseudomonas sp. with poly lining in the pit signifcantly enhanced compost recovery (29.8%), cellulase activity (55.2%) and the C:N ratio (1.9%) as compared to control. Signifcant achievement in yield components and nutrient status in soil was observed after combined application of compost with 50% recommended dose of fertilizer. Conclusion The current investigation established dual inoculation efect of E. fetida and Pseudomonas sp. with poly lining in the pit as a suitable technology for faster decomposition and efective bioconversion of agricultural waste into quality organic manure. A treatment imposed with such organic manure will be supportive in enhancing crop production as well as improving soil health.

Keywords