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Physicochemical attributes of Tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) varieties under Polyhouse and Mulching Conditions

Habtamu Tegen Nibret


Experiment was conducted to study the effect of mulch on physicochemical attributes of tomato varieties under polyhouse growing condition at Bahir Dar in 2012 and 2013 during the rainy season. Treatments were arranged in 2 x 4 factorial combinations where the two varieties viz. Miya and Cochoro were grown under four mulch conditions (black & white plastic, grass mulch and no mulch) in randomized complete block design with three replications.  The interaction of variety and mulch significantly (P≤0.05) influenced number of fruits per plant marketability of fruits, fruit width, titratable acidity, sugar to acid ratio, fruit juice content and pH. Mulch and variety significantly (P≤0.05) affected almost all physicochemical attributes of fruit. The application of mulch significantly increased number of fruits per plant, particularly; grass mulch produced significantly highest number of total and marketable fruit number per plant. Plants grown under black plastic mulch produced fruits that had significantly highest weight (80.29g). Varieties grown under mulch varied in producing fruits with all desirable chemical contents except total soluble solid. Plants grown under black plastic mulch produced fruits with significantly highest values for almost all physicochemical attributes and most importantly good flavor of fruits was attained with sugar to acid ratio >10. Considering the varieties, Cochoro was identified as better variety in terms of physicochemical attributes of fruits as compared to Miya. It is possible to conclude that growing of tomato varieties under ployhouse using mulch during rainy season produce fruits with desirable traits that satisfy both the producers and consumers’ interest and preference. Specifically, it is possible to recommend the use black plastic mulch and Cochoro variety to enhance tomato fruit physicochemical qualities for better market under polyhouse growing condition.  



Key Words: Mulch; physicochemical; polyhouse; quality and tomato

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