The vermicompost anticipates flowering and increases tomato productivity
Apart from supplying nutrients, a substrate for plant production should provide adequate conditions for root growth and development. To this effect, the use of vermicompost in the composition of substrates presents itself as an alternative to promote increments in plant production. This study aimed to determine the effective ness of vermicompost in productivity and flowering in tomato crops when partially replacing mineral fertilizers with vermicompost. Five treatments corresponding to different proportions of vermicompost and mineral fertilization were evaluated in the cultivation of two hybrid varieties of tomato (Tinto and Absoluto) in a protected environment. The percentages of vermicompost evaluated were: 0; 10; 20; 40 and 50 % in relation to mineral supplementation. The use of vermicompost to replace the mineral fertilization in 40 and 50 %provided early flowering and fruiting of tomato. For both evaluated tomato hybrids, the substitution of 40 and 50 % of mineral fertilizers for vermicompost provided mature fruits with higher mean values of fresh mass and total productivity per plant. The incorporation of vermicomposts in substrates for commercial production of tomato promotes significant benefits, such as early flowering and fruiting and productivity increase.