Effect of Chinese medicinal herbal residues compost on tomato and Chinese cabbage plants: Assessment on phytopathogenic effect and nutrients uptake

Ying Zhou, M.K. Manu, Dongyi Li, Davidraj Johnravindar, Ammaiyappan Selvam, Sunita Varjani, Jonathan Wong*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Chinese medicinal herbal residues (CMHRs) are known for their antipathogenic properties due to the presence of bioactive compounds. Hence, CMHRs could be used as a potential resource to produce biofertilizer with antipathogenic properties for agricultural applications. In this study, a novel approach was used by utilizing the waste-derived biofertilizer, i.e., CMHRs compost (CMHRC) as a nutrient supplier as well as an organic bioagent against Alternaria solani (A. solani) and Fusarium oxysporum (F. oxysporum) on tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) and Chinese cabbage (Brassica rapa subsp. Chinensis) plants. The experiments were conducted under greenhouse conditions using locally collected acidic soil wherein 2%, 5% and 10% CMHRC (dry weight) along with 5% food waste compost were used as treatments. In addition, only soil and soil with phytopathogens were used as control treatments. The results suggested that amending the compost into acidic soil significantly increased the pH to a neutral level along with enhanced uptake of nutrients. Among all the treatments, 5% CMHRs compost addition increased the tomato plant biomass production to 4.9 g/pot (dry weight) compared to 2.2 g/pot in control. A similar trend was observed in Chinese cabbage plants and the improved plant biomass production could be attributed to the combined effect of strong nutrient absorption ability by healthy roots and enhanced nutrient supply. At 5% CMHRC application rate, the nitrogen uptake by tomato and Chinese cabbage plants increased by 78% and 62%, respectively, whereas phosphorous uptake increased by 75% and 25%, respectively. The reduction in A. solani by 48% and F. oxysporum by 54% in the post-harvested soil of 5% CMHRC treatment against the control demonstrated the anti-phytopathogenic efficiency of CMHRC compost. Hence, the present study illustrates the beneficiary aspects of utilizing CMHRs to produce biofertilizer with anti-phytopathogenic properties which can be safely used for tomato and Chinese cabbage plant growth.

Original languageEnglish
Article number114747
JournalEnvironmental Research
Volume216 (Part 4)
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2023

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Environmental Science(all)

User-Defined Keywords

  • Antipathogenic property
  • Biofertilizer
  • Chinese medicinal herbal residues
  • Plant biomass production
  • Soil nutrients


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