Effects of shading on the growth of the purple pakchoy (Brassica rapa var. Chinensis) in the urban ecosystem
¹Program of Crop Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Universitas Sriwijaya, Jalan Padang Selasa No. 524, Bukit Besar, Palembang 30139, South Sumatera, Indonesia
²Faculty of Agriculture, Universitas Sriwijaya, Jalan Raya Palembang–Prabumulih Km 32, Indralaya, Ogan Ilir 30662, South Sumatera, Indonesia
³Research Center of Sub–optimal Lands, Universitas Sriwijaya, Jalan Padang Selasa No. 524, Bukit Besar, Palembang 30139, South Sumatera, Indonesia
Open green spaces in urban area can be utilized in many ways. Recently, more of the open spaces have been cultivated for vegetable production, gradually shifted from aesthetical purpose to the need for fresh healthy foods. Urban vegetable farming can be conventionally practiced on a limited backyard. Our research was aimed to assess the effects of shading treatments on growth and yield of purple pakchoi (Brassica rapa var. chinensis). The research was arranged based on the randomized block design with 4 levels of shading treatment. The results showed that shading treatments at 0%, 45%, 55%, and 80% significantly affected morphological growth traits, including plant height, number of leaf, lengths of petiole, length of leaf midrib, width of leaf blade, canopy diameter, and leaf SPAD index, total leaf fresh and dry weights, total fresh and dry roots, and lengths of stem; but did not significantly affect the leaf thickness. In all affected traits, heavier shading inhibited growth, confirming that the purple pakchoi prefers full sunlight. The leaf of purple pakchoi reached its maximum size at less than 14 days counted from the first day of leaf blade was fully unfolded. Purple pakchoi can be harvested at 35 days after transplanting. The accurate leaf area estimation in purple pakchoi can be achieved by using LW as predictor and calculated using the power regression (R² = 0.9806).