An Assessment of Inherent Chemical Properties of Soils for Balanced Fertilizer Recommendations for Cocoa in Ghana

  • E. L. Dossa
  • A. Arthur
  • W. Dogbe
  • A. Mando
  • A. A. Afrifa
  • S. Acquaye
Chapter

Abstract

Sustainable cocoa production in Ghana would require a shift in fertilizer recommendations from general applications to site-specific recommendations of fertilizers that account for initial fertility status and actual nutrient needs of soils on which cocoa is grown. A soil fertility survey was conducted in the major cocoa regions of Ghana covering the major benchmark soils. Two hundred and twenty four plots were sampled and composite surface soils collected and analyzed for selected fertility characteristics. The results show that most of the cocoa soils have low inherent fertility characterized by low C, N and exchange capacity. All the cocoa soils sorb P, which may limit availability of P in the soil solution. The soils generally are acidic, and soils in Western region, especially the Ferralsols, show the most acidic reaction with substantially measurable exchangeable Al. The results suggest that these differential characteristics of the surveyed soils should be considered in formulating balanced site-specific fertilizer for cocoa in Ghana.

Keywords

Soil Fertilizer recommendation Fertility Cocoa 

References

  1. Afrifa, A. A, Ofori-Fripong, K., Appiah, M. R., Acquaye, S., & Snoeck, D. (2006). Nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium budget under the cocoa ecosystem: Produce harvesting phase. In: Proceedings 15th international Cocoa research conference. San Jose, Costa-Rica.Google Scholar
  2. Ahenkorah, Y. (1969). A note on zinc deficiency in cacao (Theobroma Cacao L.) Ghana Journal of Agricultural Science, 2, 3–6.Google Scholar
  3. Anderson, J. M., & Ingram, J. S. I. (1993). Tropical soil biology and fertility: A handbook of methods. Wallingford: CAB International.Google Scholar
  4. Appiah, M. R., Ofori-Fripong, K., & Afrifa, A. A. (2000). Evaluation of fertilizer application on some peasant cocoa farms in Ghana. Ghana Journal of Agricultural Science, 33, 183–190.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Assomaning, E. J. A., & Kwakwa, R. S. (1967). Boron deficiency and pod malformations in (Theobroma cacao L.) Ghana Journal of Agricultural Science, 7, 126–129.Google Scholar
  6. Bache, B. W., & Williams, E. G. (1971). A phosphate sorption index for soils. Journal of Soil Science, 22, 289–301.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. CRIG. (2008). Guide to use of fertilizer on Cocoa, Farmers Guide No. 6. Tafo: Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana.Google Scholar
  8. Gee, G. W., & Bauder, J. W. (1986). Particle size analysis. In A. Klute (Ed.), Methods of soil analysis, Part I (Vol. 9, 2nd ed., pp. 383–411). Madison: American Society of Agronomy.Google Scholar
  9. Gockowski, J., & Sonwa, D. (2010). Cocoa intensification scenarios and their predicted impact on CO2 emissions, biodiversity conservation, and rural livelihoods in the Guinean rainforest of West Africa. Environmental Management., 48, 307. doi: 10.1007/s00267-010-9602-3.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Jadin, P., & Snoeck, J. (1985). La méthode du diagnostic sol pour calculer les besoins en engrais des cacaoyers. Café Cacao Thé, 29(4), 255–272.Google Scholar
  11. Kuo, S. (1996). Phosphorus. In D. L. Sparks (Ed.), Methods of soil analysis-Part 3. Chemical methods, SSSA book Series No 5 (pp. 869–919). Madison: Soil Science Society of America.Google Scholar
  12. Lindsay, W. L., & Cox, F. R. (1985). Micronutrients in tropical food crop production. In P. L. G. E. Vlek (Ed.), Developments in plant and soil sciences (Vol. 14). Dordrecht: Springer.Google Scholar
  13. Murphy, J., & Riley, J. P. (1962). A modified single solution method for the determination of phosphate in natural waters. Analytica Chimica Acta, 27, 31–36.Google Scholar
  14. Rhoades, J. D. (1982). Cation exchange capacity. In A. L. Page, R. H. Miller, & D. R. Keeney (Eds.), Methods of soil analysis, Part 2. Chemical and microbiological properties (pp. 149–157). Madison: American Society of Agronomy, Inc. Soil Science Society of America. Inc.Google Scholar
  15. SAS Institute Inc. (1999). SAS User’s guide: Statistics. Gary: SAS Institute Inc.Google Scholar
  16. Snoeck, D., Abekoe, M. K., Afrifa, A. A., & Appiah, M. R. (2006). The soil diagnostic method to compute fertilizer requirements in cocoa plantations. In: Proceedings international conference on soil science. Accra, 16–21 July 2006.Google Scholar
  17. Walkley, A., & Black, I. A. (1934). An experimentation of Degtjareff method for determining soil organic matter and a pro-posed modification of the chromic acid titration method. Soil Science, 37, 29–38.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. L. Dossa
    • 1
  • A. Arthur
    • 2
  • W. Dogbe
    • 3
  • A. Mando
    • 4
  • A. A. Afrifa
    • 2
  • S. Acquaye
    • 2
  1. 1.International Fertilizer Development CenterLomeTogo
  2. 2.Cocoa Research Institute of GhanaTafo AkimGhana
  3. 3.CSIR-SARITamaleGhana
  4. 4.GRAD ConsultOuagadougouBurkina Faso

Personalised recommendations