Sakarya University, Engineering Faculty, Environmental Engineering Department, Sakarya,Turkey
This paper deals with the suitability of agricultural and municipal organic wastes as growing media components for ornamental plants. Nine growing media prepared by mixing the main components of peat (P), hazelnut husk (H) and maize straw (M) with the fertilizer sources of municipal solid waste compost (C), bio-solid (B) and poultry manure (Pm) were compared against soil-based (C1) and peat-based (C2) controls. The suitability of such mixtures for use in soilless media was evaluated using their physico-chemical characteristics. To investigate the impact of mixtures on plant growth, two different pot experiments, including the plants of ligustrum (Ligustrum lucidum) and cypress (Cupressus macrocarpa), were conducted for two years. Physical and physico-chemical properties of mixture indicated that peat and soil were successfully replaced with hazelnut husk, maize straw, MSW-compost, bio-solid and poultry manure. The effect of fertilizer additives on plant growth was more pronounced than that of the main components. Therefore, among the present mixtures, the most suitable one for ligustrum was the mixture containing poultry manure, whereas for cypress was bio-solid, regardless of the main components.