Effect of Chemicals and Bio-fertilizers on Yield, Growth Parameters and Essential Oil Contents of Funnel (Foeniculum vulgare Miller.)


In order to investigate the influence of bio- and chemical fertilizers on growth parameters and essential oil of fennel (Foeniculum vulgare Miller.), an experiment based on randomized complete blocks design with five treatments and three replications was carried out. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (strain Sebacina vermifera) and phosphate dissolving bacteria (genera Peseudomonas) were applied as bio-fertilizers. Five treatments including T1 as a control (100% recommended dosage of NP without inoculation), T2 (50% recommended NP without inoculation), T3 (Sebacina vermifera + 50% NP) T4 (Peseudomonas + 50%), T5 (Sebacina vermifera + Peseudomonas + 50% NP) were used.  The results showed that inoculation of bio-fertilizers applied with 50% recommended dosage of NP, increased vegetative growth (plant height, number of umbel per plant, plant dry weight) of fennel plants compared to chemical fertilizer treatments only. Plants treated with combined of bio-fertilizers (arbuscular mycorrhizal strain Sebacina vermifera and phosphate dissolving bacteria genera Peseudomonas) had the highest plant height (72.6 cm), number of umbels per plant (45.5), dry weight (36.2 g) and fruit yield per plant (7.7 g). Application of bio-fertilizers also increased the amount of N, P and K in plant tissues compared to non-inoculated plants. Plants treated with combined bio-fertilizers had the highest amount of N (14.1 mg g-1), P (8.2 mg g-1) and K (9.2 mg g-1) in their tissues, while the least amount of N (8.9 mg g-1), P (4.7 mg g-1) and K (5.9 mg g-1) occurred in plant tissues treated with 50% NP fertilizers. The highest essential oil yield was also observed in combined bio-fertilizers + 50% NP. However, the least amount of essential oil yield was obtained in plants treated with half dose of chemical fertilizer.


1. World Health Organization (WHO). “Traditional medicine” Fact sheet number: 134 (December). “http://www.who.int/mediacenter/factsheets/fs134/en/.2008.

2. Neguib NYM. Organic vs. chemical fertilization of medicinal plants: a concise review of researches. Adv Environ Biol. 2011;5:394-400.

3. Ayoola OT. Yield performance of crops and soil chemical changes under fertilizer treatments in a mixed cropping system. Afr J Biotechnol. 2010;9:4018-4021.

4. Chen J. The combined use of chemical and organic fertilizers and/or bio-fertilizer for crop growth and soil fertility. Taipei Food Fertilizer Technol Bull. 2006;17: 1-9.

5. Ekin Z, Oguz F, Erman M, Ogun E. The effect of Bacillus sp. OSU-142 inoculation at various levels of nitrogen fertilization on growth, tuber distribution and yield of potato (Solanum tuberosum L.). Afr J Biotechnol. 2009;8:4418-4424.

6. Kilian M, Steiner U, Krebs B, Junge H, Schmiedeknecht G, Hain R. Bacillus subtilis mode of action of microbial agent enhancing plant vitality. Pflanzenschutz Nachrichten Bayer. 2000;53:72-93.

7. Kuntal D, Dang R, Shivananda TN, Sekeroglu N. Comparative efficiency of bio and chemical fertilizers on nutrient contents and biomass yield in medicinal plant Stevia rebaudiana Bert. Res J Med Plants 2007;1:35-39.

8. Yazdani M, Bahmanyar MA, Pirdashti H, Esmaili MA. Effect of phosphate solubilisation micro-organisms and plant growth promoting rhizobacteria on yield and yield components of corn. International J Biol Life Sci. 2009;1:2-6. 

9. Shaharoona B, Jamro GM, Zahir ZA, Arshad M, Memon KS. Effectiveness of various Pseudomonas sp and Burkholderia improving growth and yield of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). J Microbiol Biotechnol. 2007;17:1300-1307.

10. Jat RS, Ahlawat IPS. Direct and residual effect of vermicompost, bio-fertilizers and phosphorus on soil nutrient dynamics and productivity of chickpea-fodder maize sequence. J Sustain. Agri. 2006;1:41-54.

11. Ratti N, Kumar S, Verma HN, Gautam SP. Improvement bioavailability of tricalcium phosphate to Cymbopogon martini var motia by rhizobacteria. AMF and Azospirillum inoculation. Microbiol Res. 2001;156: 145-149.

12. Toro M, Azcon R, Barea JM. Improvement of arbuscular mycorrhiza development by inoculation of soil with phosphate solubilising rhizobacteria to improve rock phosphate bioavailability (32P) and nutrient cycling. Appl Environ Microbiol. 1997;63:4408-4412.

13. Cottenie A, Verloo M, Velghe M, Camerlynck R. Chemical analysis of plant soil. Manual Laboratory of Analytical and Agrochemistry. Ghent State Univ. Press. Belgium. 1982.

14. Guenther E. The essential oils. D. von Nostrand Comp. Press. New York. 1961.

15. Gad WM. Physiological studies on Foeniculum vulgare Mill. and Anethum graveolens L. M.Sc Thesis. Faculty of Agriculture. Kafr El-Sheikh. Tanta Univ., Egypt. 2001.

16. O'Keefe DM, Sylvia DM. Chronology and mechanism of P uptake by mycorrhizal sweet potato plants. New Phytol. 1993;126:651-659.

17. De Salamone IEG, Hynes RK, Nelson LM. Cytokinin production by plant growth by plant growth promoting rhizobacteria and selected mutants. Can J Microbiol. 2001;47:404-411.

18. Kaushik R, Saxena AK, Tilak KVBR. Selection of Tn5 lacZ mutants isogenic to wild type Azospirillum brasilense strains capable of growing at sub-optimal temperature. World J Microbiol Biotechnol. 2000;16:567-570.

19. Vessey JK, Buss TJ. Bacillus cereus UW85 inoculation effects on growth, nodulation and accumulation in grain legumes. Controlled-environment studies. Can. J Plant Sci. 2002;82:282-290.