Title : Performance of medicinal and aromatic Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla L.) under different planting, manure cum fertilizer regimes in Kathmandu valley
New and old genotypes of German chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla Linn.) were experimented under different planting methods, manure and fertilizer combinations first time in Kathmandu valley. The researches aimed at evaluating genotypes performance, identifying suitable planting method and optimum combination of manures and fertilizers. The germplasm evaluation experiment was conducted at the National Agriculture Research Institute field, NARC, Khumaltar during December-May of two consecutive years. Planting method trial was laid out in randomized complete block and manure cum fertilizer trial was in Latin square design. The results showed good performance of chamomile growth, development and oil content. Major agronomic traits had average figures in all experiments comparable to chamomile growing areas. Most data differed significantly and at par. New genotype produced relatively higher number of branches, leaves and flower heads maintaining more plant density. Growth was higher in row sown and transplanted plots, row sowing found more beneficial. Transplanted plots delayed maturity. Transplanted (0.95%) and broadcasted (0.80%) chamomile gave higher oil percentage, no difference found between genotypes. Significantly (P<0.05) higher and at par branch numbers, flower heads, biomass yield, plant height were recorded in the treatments with higher rate of FYM @20 ton ha-1 following by combined application of NPK 60:40:20 kg ha-1 plus manure 10 ton ha-1. Oil content was highest (0.95%) in FYM (20 ton ha-1) applied plots followed by combined fertilization (0.80%). Despite inferior to treatment N:P:K @ 60:40:20 kg ha-1 only to enhance growth and oil production, other results suggested suitable technology and successful cultivation of chamomile in valley conditions and recommended.