Effect of Hairy Vetch (Vicia villosa R.) Legume on Red Soil Properties, Growth, Yield and Quality of Turmeric (Curcuma longa L.) in a Subtropical Region

  • Mohammad Sagirul Islam Majumder
  • Mohammad Amzad Hossain
  • Hikaru Akamine
  • Michio Onjo
  • Mohammad Kabirul Islam


Red soil is widely distributed in tropical and subtropical regions, which contains low organic matter and nutrients. Hairy vetch legume improves low fertile soil by supplying organic matters and crop nutrients. This experiment evaluated the effect of hairy vetch on red soil properties and growth, yield and quality of turmeric. The pot experiment was conducted using fresh hairy vetch at the rate equivalent to dry weight of 0, 94, 186, 280 g per turmeric plant. Each pot was filled with 10 kg of red soil and one turmeric seed rhizome was planted. Hairy vetch provided 5.01-15.03 g N, 0.1-0.3 g P and 1.57-4.71 g K per pot. The soil with hairy vetch was found to be loose and had significantly higher soil moisture than the soil without hairy vetch. Soil bulk density decreased from 0.68 to 0.60 (g cm-3) with the hairy vetch application. All the hairy vetch treated turmeric plants survived longer and had significantly higher plant height, tiller number, leaf number, SPAD value, shoot biomass and yield as compared to control plants. Highest yield was obtained with 280 g hairy vetch treated turmeric plants, which was statistically similar to 186 g hairy vetch treated plants, indicating that about 186 g dry (9 ton ha-1) or equivalent fresh hairy vetch could be incorporated into red soil for higher yield. The overall results indicate that hairy vetch is an important legume in subtropical region which could provide huge organic matter and plant nutrients, and improve soil properties and crop yield.