INFLUENCE OF BIOFERTILIZERS ON THE GROWTH OF STEVIA (STEVIA REBAUDIANA) AND STEVIOSIDE CONTENT UNDER DRIP IRRIGATIONRupinder Kaur and Davinderpal Kaur
The experiment was laid out in split plot design, replicated thrice. There were three methods of irrigation, Drip irrigation (I1), Furrow irrigation (I2), Flood irrigation (I3) and five sources of nutrients Biofertilizers (F1), Vermicompost (F2), Bio+Vermi (F3), Foliar application of NPK@15 kg/ha in six equal splits (F4) and Control (F5). Other required cultural practices were followed to get maximum productivity. The results revealed that growth parameters like number of branches, number of leaves, leaf area index, fresh weight, dry weight and leaf : Stem ratio were recorded maximum in Drip irrigation with Foliar application of NPK @15kg/ha in six equal splits. Maximum yield of dry leaves was obtained through Drip irrigation (1312.4 kg/ha) and foliar application of NPK @ 15 kg/ha in six equal splits (1306.2 kg/ha). Quality parameters like stevioside content and stevioside yield was recorded maximum in Drip irrigation with Vermicompost. Maximum B:C ratio was found in Drip irrigation and with NPK foliar spray.