An experiment was conducted at Bangladesh Sugarcrop Research Institute (BSRI) farm under irrigated condition during 2017-2018 cropping season to examine the agronomic performance of BSRI developed promising sugarcane clones at different planting dates. There were two planting times: November, 2017 as early and January, 2018 as late. Four promising clones namely I 103-10, I 7-11, I 111-11 and I 230-11 were tested in this experiment, where variety Isd 39 was taken as standard. The results revealed that the highest number of tillers found in I 7-11both in early and late plantation (105.14×103 ha-1 and 71.53×103 ha-1, respectively). The highest yield in early and late plantation was found from I 103-10 (120.70 tha-1) and I 111-11(75.70 tha-1), respectively. In addition, the highest pol (%) was found from I 111-11 in early and late plantation (14.09% and 14.75%, respectively). The results also revealed that yield and yield contributing parameters were found to be declined in the late plantation. Pol (%) cane in early planting was found almost statistically identical among selected clones/variety but significantly varied in the late plantation. However, the clones I 103-10 and I 111-11 were found most promising in the study site as they produced higher yield and yield contributing parameters over the tested clones/variety for both in early and late plantation.
Key words: Sugarcane, planting time, promising clones, agronomic performance.
Sugarcane is an important cash crop of Bangladesh with an average yield of 45 tha-1 as against its theoretical approximation of 75 tha-1. At present, the area under sugarcane is about 80.97 thousand hectares covering both mill and non-mill zones with an annual production of about 3142 thousand tons (BBS, 2019). There are number of reasons for lower cane yield and one of those is the planting of low yielding varieties. The main reason of poor yield of sugarcane has been identified as insufficient number of millable stalks and lower unit stalks weight. Sugar industries in Bangladesh continuously need high yielding and high sugar varieties. After a considerable period of cultivation sugarcane varieties show a tendency to decline in yield and vigour (Barnes, 1954 and Humbert, 1959). It is an obscure and puzzling problem to scientists, growers and processors. To maintain high yielding, it is necessary to replace varieties every few years with new clones (Poehlman and Barthakur, 1969). Therefore, it is need of the time to introduce new high yielding varieties with good ratoon ability in the country (Chattha and Ehsanullah, 2003). Mian (2006) reported that variety plays a key role in both increasing and decreasing per unit area sugar yield. The use of inferior quality cane varieties affects sugarcane production negatively as situation prevails today. The solution of low cane yield and sugar recovery problem lies in the planting time of improved cane varieties (Chattha et al., 2006). Viator et al., (2005) stated that planting date is one of the important variables that affects sugarcane stand establishment. Hoy et al., (2006) observed that cane weight and maturity of sugarcane are highly associated with planting time that may influence its productivity. Due to late planting, the cane germination and tiller population become lowered consequently resulted in lesser millable cane stalk production and hence reduced final cane yield (Omoto and Abaya, 2005). Hossain et al. (2011) concluded that growth characters like tillers, millable cane stalks, cane height, girth and unit stalk weight were significantly influenced by different planting dates. The values of all the yield contributing factors and quality parameters were higher in the crops planted in November compared to that planted in February and