In this study, we tested the hypothesis that pyrogenic carbon (biochar) has properties that enable it to replace fresh organic matter (cattle manure) in seedling substrates. These properties include specific electrophysiological interactions in soil-plant media, stability and longevity. The experiment was conducted in the nursery at the State University of Mato Grosso, located in the municipality of Nova Xavantina, between April and June 2011. The experimental design consisted of randomized blocks with ten treatments and four replicates, including a commercial substrate. Linear regression analysis showed a strong positive relationship between manure treatments and number of leaves, fresh and dry biomass, diameter, height and Dickson Quality Index at 30 and 40 days after sowing (DAS), with the exception of height at 30 DAS. There was no significant relationship for biochar dosage in any assessment for these parameters. The use of substrates with different dosages of cattle manure resulted in an increase of seedling quality compared to biochar and commercial substrates. The hypothesis that biochar can be substituted for fresh organic matter and is more stable in the substrate was not supported.
Solanum melongena; charcoal; cattle manure; seedling production