Water Spinach – Ipomoea aquatica

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Crop: Water Spinach
Result: Yield increases of 30% to 40% and increased the nutritiously (iron) important leaf area by approx. 120%
Location: West of Beijing, China

Building on extensive vegetable studies of Agrostim™ in the United States, Vietnam, Egypt, Canada, Colombia, Syria, India, China, Honduras, and Guatemala, a series of Water Spinach – Agrostim™ studies were initiated at vegetable research facility at Si Ji Qing, West of Beijing. Studies were focused on Agrostim’s comparative impacts on increased plant growth (shoot, roots, leaves) and yield.

Study Design:

Three total plots were established covering an area of 9 mu for the cultivation of common water spinach, Ipomoea aquatica. Agrostim was applied to 50% of the plants at a rate of 1 teaspoon of liquid Agrostim concentrate per 30 pounds of water for foliar application. The other 50% of the plants were fertilized with the normal fertilizer regime of green manure and 50 pounds of Urea per mu.

Fig.1. Water Spinach growth 14 days after fertilizer application. Agrostim treated plants are on the left side of the plate, normal fertilizer regime treated plants are on the right.

Results:

Fig. 2. Comparison of total Water Spinach growth at day 14. Agrostim treated plants are on the left, urea/manure treated plants are on the right.

Table 1. Average growth parameters for Water Spinach at day 14. Sample sizes were greater than 400 individual plants per treatment.

Agrostim Treatment Standard Treatment
Plant height (cm) 14.5 12.0
Stem diameter (mm) 6.0 4.0
Leaf width (cm) 28.0 12.0
Root length (cm) 7.6 6.1

Fig. 3. Comparison of individual Water Spinach leaves at day 14. Agrostim treated plants are on the left, urea/manure treated plants are on the right.

Fig. 4. Comparison of Water Spinach root growth at day 14. Agrostim treated plants are on the left, urea/manure treated plants are on the right.

Conclusions:

Agrostim is an effective fertilizer for utilization on Water Spinach and related vegetable crops. Agrostim consistently gave overall yield increases of 30% to 40%.
Agrostim is a spray application fertilizer with foliar application an effective mode of product delivery. Agrostim increased the nutritiously (iron) important leaf area by approximately 120% over the standard urea/manure regime.
Agrostim was found to be far more effective and less costly than Pen Shi Bao (a Chinese foliar fertilizer). The average production cost calculated for Agrostim was approximately $1.13/mu (9.29 yuans/mu).
The positive controls, NP synthetic fertilizer(only) applied at a rate of 50 pounds/Mu may have provided a super nutrient rich media, especially considering the starting “manure rich” soils used. The ratio of synthetic fertilizer usage compared to Agrostim was approximately 48 to 1 (In terms of pounds applied per Mu). A cost benefit analysis may well establish Agrostim’s superior capabilities.
Agrostim treated water spinach plants showed significantly greater average plant height (>0.01), greater average stem diameter (>0.01), grater average leaf width (>0.01), and greater average root length (>0.01) over the standard locally used urea/manure fertilizer via a “Paired T Statistic”.
Additional studies to “fine tune” the exact Agrostim requirements on a sustained basis will clearly show the improved yields and increased disease resistance that is seen everywhere with Agrostim utilization.