- by Ernesto S. Elefan (completed September 2007)
Kasla (Jatropha curcas L.), also known as Physic nut, is a small tree of plant family Euphorbiaceae, that grows widely in the Philippines. It has recently gained global interest because of its seed oil that can be used for blending with diesel producing an ecology-friendly biofuel as an alternative source of energy. This study compared the early growth response of the Kasla to the interactions of single seed inoculation of bio-fertilizers Azotobacter, Effective Microorganism(EM), and Bio N and different planting media consist of garden soil (Sta. Rita clay loam), humus (decomposed rice hull), river sand, and their mixture on 1:1:1 ratio over the uninoculated control.It was carried out in a 4 x 4 factorial experiment in randomized complete block design with 16 treatment combinations and four replications. Azotobacter x 1:1:1 mixture and EM x humus interactions produced significantly (P<0.05) taller plants. Fresh matter weight per plant was significantly (P<0.05) highest in Azotobacter x Humus and Bio N x Humus interactions. Leaf count, shoot base diameter, and dry matter weight per plant, on the other hand were not significantly (P<0.05) affected by the other biofertilizers and planting media interactions. Humus showed to be the most promising growing medium for Kasla as revealed by the significant (P<0.05) results in plant height, leaf count, shoot base diameter, fresh matter weight, and dry matter weight per plant. A 1:1:1 mixture, however, can be a good alternative. Using garden soil, either EM or Bio N can be used, However, with sand as planting medium, EM can be applied as a seed microinoculant.