The Effect of Farmyard Manure on Spring-grown Potato Quality and Quantity in Raqqa Province

Mohammed Al-Balikh

General Commission for Scientific Agricultural Research-
al-Raqqa Research Center
Al-Furat  University, Faculty of Agriculture


Potato is considered the main widespread food in the world. It is either taken direct or after being changed to protein by animal product.
Potato ranks the fourth after wheat, corn, and rice, and the first among tuber crops,  considering that potato unit of area produces dry material more than that of cereal crops on which the world depends.
Potato tubers are used in different fields. They are used as seeds and a human food when directly used or after processing (canning, drying and freezing). In addition, they are used in industry to get lactic acid, citric acid, ethanol, biotanol, and starch (dextrine, textile, paper, and sticks), as well as extracting protein waste liquid of starch factories, or as animals fodder (fresh, dried and silage). Moreover, they are used as nourishing environments for micro-organisms when studied.
This study aims to: (1) study the characteristics of productivity and quality of potato using different types of manures; (2) find the best type and amount of manures to obtain better quality and higher yield; (3) determine the effect of manures compared with chemical fertilizers on production and quality and soil characteristics.
The experiments were carried out in collaboration with Faculty of Agriculture (Al-Furat University) and General Commission for Scientific Agricultural Research (GCSAR), Al-Raqqa Agricultural Research Center.
The experiments were carried out in the growing seasons 2004-2005-2006 using potato (Draga variety), six manures (sheep manure, cow manure, wheat compost, municipal solid waste, olive solid waste, and peanut compost)  with four levels (2.5-5.0-7.5-10) ton/dunum, and two controls (chemical fertilizer, zero fertilizer).
The experiment was designed according to RCBD (split block) system. The treatment were distributed to three replications and four 3.9 m lines. The row spacing 80 cm, seed spacing 30 cm, and planting depth 10 cm.
The important studied characteristics: (i) number of days from planting until the emergence of 5% and 75% from tubers, and percentage of emergence; (ii) average plant height and number of stems per tuber; (iii) volume distribution of tubers; (iv) productivity characteristics: number of tubers/plant, average weight of tuber, one plant productivity, and productivity; and (v) chemical characteristics: percentage of dry matter, starch, specific gravity, and melting solid matter.
The results were analyzed by computer to get the least significant range (LSR). They can be summarized by:
-Manures from plant sources were more effective on potato yield.
-Manures from animal sources were more effective on chemical characteristics of potato.
-Increase in manure application decreases the number of days until tuber emergence, percentage of small tubers, dry matter, starch and specific gravity.
-Increase in manure application increases the number of stems, plant height, percentage of big tubers, tubers per plant, and yield.
-Manures from wheat compost and pea nut compost (5 ton/dunum) were more effective on potato yield.
-Manures from wheat compost and olive solid waste and cow manure (2.5 ton/dunum) and municipal solid waste (5 ton/dunum) and sheep manure (7.5 ton/dunum) were more effective on chemical characteristics of potato.
The study recommends the following:
-Application of manures from animal sources for improving chemicals characteristics of tubers and soil.
-Application of manures from plant sources and municipal solid wastes to get higher yield.
-Application of manures from wheat compost and pea nut compost (5 ton/dunum) to get higher yield.
-Application of olive solid wastes, wheat compost and cow manure (2.5 ton/dunum), municipal solid wastes (5 ton/dunum), sheep manure (7.5 ton/dunum) to get high quality potato.
-Successful planting and production of spring-grown potato  in al-Raqqa province, using manures, drip irrigation, and zero chemicals.