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Effects of Rhizome Length and Planting Depth on the Emergence and Growth of Alepidea amatymbica Eckl. & Zeyh

Medicinal Plants and Economic Development (MPED) Research Centre, Department of Botany, University of Fort Hare, Alice 5700, South Africa
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Plants 2020, 9(6), 732; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9060732
Received: 20 March 2020 / Revised: 29 March 2020 / Accepted: 31 March 2020 / Published: 10 June 2020
Alepidea amatymbica is used as a herbal medicine for the treatment of various diseases. As a result of its high medicinal value, this plant is being overexploited by herbal traders with little attention being paid to its conservation, which could lead to its extinction. Cultivation of Alepidea amatymbica was conducted to determine the appropriate planting depth and rhizome fragment length for the growth of this plant. The experiment was laid out in a Complete Randomized Block Design (CRBD) with two factors in a 6 × 3 factorial design. There were six levels of fragment length (1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 cm) and three levels of burial depth (2.5, 5 and 7.5 cm). Emergence rate, number of leaves, leaf area, and plant height, number of florets, rhizome length gain, rhizome weight gain, shoot moisture, and rhizome moisture were measured as growth parameters. The best overall yield in terms of plant height, shoot emergence, rhizome weight gain, number of florets and number of leaves was observed in 7.5 cm planting depth at 6 cm rhizome length. Four- centimetre rhizome length had the highest leaf area of 111.9 ± 3.5 cm2, 101.3 ± 3.5 cm2, 105 ± 3.5 cm2 at 2.5, 5, 7.5 cm planting depth respectively. Shorter fragment lengths showed high potential for vegetative propagation in terms of rhizome length gain at all burial depths. These results suggest that A. amatymbica can regenerate from buried rhizomes and they may contribute to the establishment of a protocol for propagation that could help in conservation of this plant to avoid its extinction View Full-Text
Keywords: Alepidea amatymbica; planting depths; rhizome length; cultivation Alepidea amatymbica; planting depths; rhizome length; cultivation
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Mangoale, R.M.; Afolayan, A.J. Effects of Rhizome Length and Planting Depth on the Emergence and Growth of Alepidea amatymbica Eckl. & Zeyh. Plants 2020, 9, 732.

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