Effect of vermicompost on the growth and production of amashito pepper, interactions with earthworms and rhizobacteria

E. Huerta, O. Vidal, A. Jarquin, V. Geissen, R. Gomez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Increasing yield is one of the goals in the tropics. Traditional farming is replaced in many cases by agroindustrial production which often leads to environmental pollution due to the marked use of pesticides and fertilizers. In Tabasco, Amashito pepper (Capsicum annum var. glabriusculcum) is cultivated in the traditional way in backyards or cocoa fields with no chemical inputs. The germination of these kind of peppers is difficult to achieve, since wild peppers seeds have a large range of dormancy. Plant-growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPRs) are used as inoculants for biofertilization, phytostimulation and biocontrol. Soil fauna has an important function in regulating rhizosphere microbial processes and therefore significantly affects plant growth. Earthworms produce indirect effects through changes in the environment of the roots or via interactions with organisms that affect root growth and production. Our aim was to study the effects of different fresh organic matter, earthworms (P. corethrurus, oligochaeta) and rhizobacteria (A. brasiliensis) on plant growth, and yield production of amashito pepper (Capsicum annuum var. glabriusculum). We established a three factorial outdoors mesocosms experiment. We tested the effects of 3 substrates (dry cocoa husks (C), Panicum sp grass-cocoa husks vermicompost (V), cocoa husks with cow manure (CC) (type of germination substrate, factor 1), the presence (E) and absence of P. corethrurus (WE) (earthworm, factor 2) and the absence (WB) or presence (B) of A. brasiliensis (rizobacteria, factor 3). After 173 days, fruit production was significantly more in plants raised in vermicompost. Vermicompost significantly enhanced the highest weight (23.4g), height (26.7 cm) and production of leaves per plant (20.6 leaves per plant). Further studies are required in order to understand the interactions between vermicompost, plants, earthworms and rhizobacteria.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)282-288
JournalCompost Science & Utilization
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2010


  • plant-growth
  • humic substances
  • nitrogen mineralization
  • pig manure
  • take-all
  • soil
  • greenhouse
  • casts
  • decomposition
  • lumbricus


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