ABSTRACT
The effect of NPK fertilizer on quality seed production of chilies (Capsicum fruescens L.) (cv. Sonic) crossing male line (LTSL-004-M) and female line (LTSL-004-F) was evaluated at Germplasm Centre and Plant Biotechnology Lab, Department of Horticulture, PSTU during the period from November 2014 to October 2015. Ten different treatments of NPK fertilizer viz. T1: 110 kg N + 175 kg P + 96 kg K ha-1, T2: 119 kg N + 210 kg P + 96 kg K ha–1, T3: 132 kg N + 175 kg P + 96 kg K ha–1, T4: 145 kg N + 175 kg P + 96 kg K ha–1, T5: 110 kg N + 190 kg P + 96 kg K ha–1, T6: 110 kg N + 210 kg P + 96 kg K ha–1, T7: 110 kg N + 231 kg P + 96 kg K ha–1, T8: 110 kg N + 175 kg P + 104 kg K ha–1, T9: 110 kg N + 175 kg P + 115 kg K ha–1 and T10: 110 kg N + 175 kg P + 127 kg K ha–1 were used in this experiment. The study revealed that T4 produced the highest yield of seed (40.27 kg ha–1), which is statistical similar to T8. In seed viability characteristics, T9 treated seeds showed the highest germination (100, 97.33 and 94.97%) at 1st (after harvest), 2nd (2 MAH- Month after harvest) and 3rd (4 MAH) observations, respectively. The T3 treated seeds performed well in respect of Seed Vigor Index (SVI) at 1st and 2nd observations (8.00 and 7.48, respectively) but T9 at 3rd observation.

Key words: NPK fertilizer, chili, seed yield, germination, viability, vigor.

Introduction

Chilies (Capsicum frutescens L.) is the third important crop of family Solanaceae after tomato and potato (Naz, 2006). It grows best on a well drained, silt or clay loam soil. The yield of Chilies depends on adequate supply of the essential nutrients (Alabi, 2006). Nutrient supply is an important aspect of the improved technologies developed and whose widespread adoption continues to ensure higher fruit yields, better quality and yield stability. Nitrogen plays a vital role as a constituent of protein, nucleic acid and chlorophyll (Devlin, 1972). Adequate nitrogen increases the quality, fruit size, keeping quality, color and taste (Shukla and Nair, 1993). Nitrogen influences flower development of several vegetable crops including pepper, tomato and cucumber (Kinet et al., 1985). Phosphorus is also one of the important macro essential elements for normal growth and development of plant (Bose and Som, 1986). The effect of phosphorus on the formation and translocation of carbohydrates, roots development, nodulation, growth and other agronomic characters are well recognized. Phosphorus induces earliness in flowering and fruiting including seed formation (Buckman and Brady, 1980). Again secondary mechanism of interference was the absorption of phosphorus from the soil through luxury consumption, increasing the tissue content without enhancing smooth biomass accumulation (Santos et al., 2004). The high quality of seed in terms of viability and vigor are the essential factors which determine the seedling development in nursery and plant establishment in the field to get higher yield with high quality seed (Kodalli, 2006). Payerol and Bhangoo (1990) reported that there was gradual decrease in viability parameters of chili seed starting from 6 months to 20 months of ambient storage. The scientists of Lal Teer Seed Limited are trying their best to identify high yielding variety through their research works. In present, the scientists of Lal Teer Seed Limited have already identified and producing some high yielding varieties and some hybrid varieties through CMS (Cytoplasmic Male Sterility) line by hand pollination method. But in respect of hybrid seed they are facing continuous losing seed viability problem in course of time. Up to three months of producing about 90% seeds are germinated but after that, it starts to reduce. So they cannot ensure the farmers to supply hybrid seed against their requirement. Therefore, the main objectives of the investigation were to standardize the different combinations of NPK fertilizers to produce good quality F1 seed from CMS line and assure long storage.