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Accueil du site → Doctorat → Afrique du Sud → 2019 → Yield characteristics, carbon capture and chemical composition of moringa oleifera under diverse planting population and agro-ecological conditions of the Limpopo Province

University of Limpopo (2019)

Yield characteristics, carbon capture and chemical composition of moringa oleifera under diverse planting population and agro-ecological conditions of the Limpopo Province

Bopape-Mabapa, Moshidi Paulina

Titre : Yield characteristics, carbon capture and chemical composition of moringa oleifera under diverse planting population and agro-ecological conditions of the Limpopo Province

Auteur : Bopape-Mabapa, Moshidi Paulina

Université de soutenance : University of Limpopo

Grade : DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY IN AGRICULTURE (PLANT PRODUCTION) 2019

Résumé partiel
Moringa oleifera is a multipurpose fast growing tree which is widely cultivated in tropical and subtropical regions of the world due to its numerous benefits. The benefits include medicinal use, industrial use, soil fertility, water purification, climate change mitigation as well as of nutritional value for humans and livestock. Recently, many areas globally have been rendered vulnerable to climate change as well as food insecurity. Climate change increases irregularities of rainfall and temperature patterns in semi-arid conditions. One practical way to address this challenge in the agricultural sector is to introduce more trees crop species which are found to be more tolerant than annual crops under harsh growing conditions. Moringa is one species that could be considered under variable climatic conditions for positive outcomes through climate change adaptation and mitigation as well as life sustenance against food insecurity threats. Production of moringa in South Africa is exclusively for leaf processing and consumption. To date, there is no documented information available about seed and oil yield production of moringa mainly in the Limpopo Province of South Africa. The aim of the study was to generate knowledge on moringa growth, nutritional composition, seed and oil yield production as well as its response to drought through gaseous exchange parameters, as influenced by plant density under diverse agro-ecological locations in Limpopo Province. The study was conducted in the Limpopo Province, South Africa, from November 2013 to January 2016. The study area falls within the semi-region which is characterized by low and erratic rainfall which predominately falls in summer as well as extremely low or high temperatures. A survey was conducted from November 2013 to September 2014 in five districts of the Limpopo Province. Focus group discussion, questionnaires and field observations were used for data collection. A total of 150 moringa growers formed part of the focus group and a questionnaire was administered to only thirty-one farmers, who constitute the population of farmers producing moringa within an area of 0.25 ha or more. A second study was conducted at two experimental sites in the Limpopo Province of northern part of South Africa to evaluate for the first time, the effect of plant density and cutting interval on biomass production and chemical composition of moringa grown under two diverse climatic conditions. Four different planting densities (435 000, 300 000, 200 000 and 100 000 plants/ha) were arranged in a randomized complete block design and experimental samples were replicated four times. A third study was conducted over two years to achieve additional objectives which included evaluation of gaseous exchange, biomass, seed, and oil yield. Untreated seeds of Moringa oleifera were used for establishing the trial at densities of 5 000, 2 500, 1 667 and 1 250 plants ha-1, with eight replicates. The same study was used to achieve the objective on gaseous exchange in comparison with other two naturally growing tree species of mopane (Colophospermum mopane) and marula (Sclerocarya birrea) trees growing within the moringa trial vicinity. The study was further used to evaluate the effect of planting density on biomass, grain, oil yield production and nutritional composition of Moringa oleifera trees. The last part of the study was carried out in the five districts of the Limpopo Province to determine the influence of soil physical and chemical properties on the nutritional composition of moringa leaves. The farms that were identified during the survey were also used to achieve other objectives of the study. In order to determine soil and leaf nutritional composition, soil samples were collected and analyzed for physical and chemical properties.

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