EFFECTS OF DIFFERENT FIRE REGIMES ON GERMINATION AND DEVELOPMENT MEDIA OF TRECULIA
Nigerian Journal of Forestry, 49 (2) 89 - 95
Egwunatum, A. E., Adekunle, V. A .J. and Menankiti, O. A. (2019}
This study examined the effects of different fire regimes as media on the growth and development of Treculia africana. Treatment consisted of topsoil that was fired at different regimes of 5, 10, 15 and 20 minutes using equal weight of ignited vegetative debris. Resulting fired topsoil treatments were then allowed to equilibrate with the environment for 24hours before sieving and analyzed for pH, phosphorus, Mg2+, Ca2+, Na+, and Cation Exchange Capacity (CEC), before loading into various germination troughs of 2mm mesh sizes. The treatments were then watered before viable seeds of Treculia were sown at the rate of 50 seeds per trough for the fire treated top-soils (FTS) as well as the untreated topsoil (UTS) and its composite of river-sand (CTS). Germination was then monitored for a period of 30 days after which the seedlings were pricked to poly pots recharged with the treatments at 3 replicates per treatment. Tree growth variables namely height, number of leaf, collar diameter as well as leaf area were taken and the data were subjected to Analysis of Variance (ANOVA). Significant means were separated using the DMRT at 5% level of significance. The results showed that germination period was in the order of 14days for the 15mFTS 17days for the 5mFTS 19 days for both the 20mFTS and UTS and 28 days for CTS. The germination percentage was 68% for the UTS 30% for 15mFTS 14% for 5mFTS and 12% for CTS treatments. The CEC was 62.12 meq/100g for the 10mFTS 56.91meq/100g for UTS and 17.79meq/100g for 15mFTS. These were the values that contributed to the mineral absorption capacity of the fire treated soils that regulated the cytoplasmic activities for the highest height (4.764 ± 0.262) and leaf area (9.848 ± 1.246cm2) for the 15m FTS and 10m FTS respectively as potential nursery media for the growth of Treculia africana in comparison to the traditional topsoil and river-sand.