Prospect of Fertigation for Nutrient Management on Pepper Cultivation

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ESTATE CROPS INFO – Pepper is classified as nutrient demanding crop. In the field cultivation practices, 20-50% of the total cost of input production is for fertilizer provision. Therefore,  nutrient management is  the key to improve pepper cultivation efficiency in the field. Currently, fertilization practices in pepper cultivation in the field are lack of synchronization between  composition, dosage, frequency  and nutrient requirement. This lead to poor plant performance and much lesser production than its potential. Application of fertigation technology is enable to precisely adjust the composition and dosage of nutrients according to the physiological development of the plant, hence improving nutrient use efficiency.  Furthermore, it promotes maximum plant growth and yield. The results of previous studies indicated that the application of fertigation technology in horticultural plants induced nutrient use efficiency up to 25-40% compared to conventional fertilization approach, hence improving farmer’s income 10-15%. Even though fertigation is technically beneficial, its application in pepper cultivation in Indonesia has not yet developed. Several factors were alleged as the obstacles were lack of understanding of pepper farmers towards the superiority of fertigation technology, the technology  that are considered to be still expensive hence increasing  total cost, and the unavailability of alternative easy and cheap fertigation  technologies. The objective of this review was to describe the development of fertigation technology, its economic value and the perspective of its application in pepper cultivation.

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