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Swiss chard (Beta vulgaris var. cicla) is a leafy vegetable that belongs to the Chenopodiaceae family. The leaves are cooked, if still tender they are used in salads. Over the years, Emawati have adopted the use of inorganic fertilizers as they are easy to apply and come with recommended application rates. However, their main drawback is that they are environmentally unfriendly especially when washed into rivers, streams and other water bodies. For this cause, the use of animal manures has been promoted. Four-week-old Swiss chard seedlings were transplanted on the 4th of February, 2016 in 1.5 x1.5 m plots with an inter and intra row spacing of 45 cm and they were irrigated twice a day during the first week and every second day from the second week until the end of the experiment. The experiment was conducted at the Horticulture Department Farm, Faculty of Agriculture and Consumer Sciences, Luyengo Campus of the University of Swaziland to determine the effects of chicken manure application rates on growth, yield and quality of Swiss chard. Four chicken manure application rates (10, 20, 40 and 80 t/ha) and a recommended 900 kg/ha, inorganic basal fertilizer with a 125 kg/ha LAN top dressing fertilizer used as a control. A Randomised Complete Block Design (RCBD) with four replicates was used. The study showed that the application of 80 t/ha of chicken manure improved the growth and yield of Swiss chard. It is recommended that farmers may use 80 t/ha of chicken manure because it gave the best results compared to the other treatments. The highest fresh shoot mass (237.5 g) was obtained in plants treated with 80 t/ha of chicken manure while the lowest fresh shoot mass (100.0 g) was obtained in plants fertilized with inorganic fertilizers. It was concluded that 80 t/ha was the best under the conditions of this study and it was found that fresh mass at the end was the most important parameter to consider.
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