HomeIAMURE International Journal of Ecology and Conservationvol. 20 no. 1 (2016)

Rice Hull: Its Potentials as Mulch for the Commercial Production of Mulberry Sapling

Zosima Q. Carasi | Romeo C. Carasi | Lilia A. Ancheta



Sapling is commonly used in establishing a mulberry plantation. Matured mulberry stems were propagated in nursery beds for 90-180 days to develop its root system for faster feld survival. Nursery operation was facilitated by introducing the use of rice hull mulch. Te effect of rice hull was evaluated on the growth of sapling, weeds, soil fertility, and soil moisture for two years at two trials every year during summer and rainy season. Raw rice hull (RRH) at 2.5 kg/m2 and 5 kg/m2 used alone or combined with carbonized rice hull (CRH) at 1.75 kg/m2 were compared to un mulch and the black plastic sheet. Te 5kg/m2 RRH alone or with 1.75kg/m2 CRH, increased plant height, number of leaves and root length of sapling at 90 days after planting (DAP) during summer. Weed control effect was also observed at 30 DAP. Likewise, it lowered weed population (reduction of 45-65%) at 30-90 DAP and decreased weed biomass at 90 DAP during rainy season. Improved soil OM by 25% and increased soil available N was observed after successive mulch applications. Te 2.5 kg RRH or with CRH combination also controlled weeds at 30-90 days (rainy season) and increased available N. Soil moisture was higher in mulched than in un mulch. Tese rates of rice hull mulch promoted sapling growth, controlled weeds and improved soil fertility.