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Chemical analysis of spinach waste during composting and vermicomposting

Deepakshi Sharma, Jatinder Kaur Katnoria* & Adarsh Pal Vig
Department of Botanical and Environmental Sciences, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar-143005, Panjab, India
Received 16th December, 2009; Revised 19th February, 2010

Abstract : India is one of the leading countries in the production of kitchen waste. Most of this kitchen waste is of organic nature and contributes to 70 % to 80 % of urban solid waste. It is estimated that each household of four family members in India generates 0.5 to 0.75 kg kitchen waste per day. Punjab, being an agricultural state, produces large number of fresh vegetables, which are commonly consumed at local level. Among various vegetables, spinach is one of the most commonly consumed vegetables in Punjab and produces large amount of organic waste, yet the use of spinach waste as compost and vermicompost is still limited. Keeping this in mind, the present study was planned to estimate various chemical changes viz., nitrates, phosphates, sodium, potassium, calcium and pH of spinach collected from the Supermarket of Amritsar during its composting and vermicomposting. It was observed that composted spinach sample showed higher contents of nitrates, phosphates and potassium along with other cations viz., sodium, calcium and magnesium when compared to vermicomposted samples of both spinach and animal dung. All the samples were found to alkaline in nature with composted sample showing the maximum pH of 7.6.


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