Yield potential of Milk thistle production in south western Slovakia

Miroslav Habán, Dana Luščáková, Marta Habánova, Milan Macák, Renáta Kobidová


DOI: 10.15414/afz.2015.18.04.79–82

Received 28. August 2015 ǀ Accepted 9. October 2015 ǀ Available online 7. December 2015

Milk thistle is annual to biennial medicinal plant from the Asteraceae family. Polyfactorial field experiment was established
and investigated during the vegetation period of the years 2012–2014. The trial was arranged in one independent block.
Plant material variety Silyb was harvested in the ontogenetic stage the achenes ripening. Three evaluated factors were as
follows: crop residues – intercrop – fertilization. Milk thistle was integrated to four crop rotation design with following order
of crops: common pea – winter wheat – milk thistle – maize. Average yield of milk thistle achenes significantly differ in the
range from 479.6 kg ha-1 in 2012 up to 602.5 kg ha-1 in 2013. The highest yield of milk thistle was measured 745.0 kg ha-1
(2013 treatment: no crop residues, with intercrop, with fertilization). The impact of growing year on yield milk thistle achenes
confirmed the high variability of yields. On output of yield milk thistle achenes we were confirmed highly significant effect
of year and fertilization, and inconclusive impact of sowing intercrop and ploughing crop residues. In all evaluated years,
significantly 20% higher average yield for treatments with mineral fertilization was confirmed. Based on the three-year
results, it is recommended to continue the research of the production parameters of milk thistle yields in following growing
seasons with focus to better used of yield potential of milk thistle in Slovak conditions.
Keywords: Silybum marianum L., yield, intercrop, fertilization, crop residues

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