Journal of Oil Palm Research Vol. 28  December 2016 p.  479-484
DOI: https://doi.org/10.21894/jopr.2016.2804.09

INFLUENCE OF FROND, STEM AND ROOTS OF OIL PALM SEEDLINGS IN VERMICOMPOST FROM OIL PALM BIOMASS

Author(s): Z NAHRUL HAYAWIN*; ASTIMAR, A A*; R NUR RASHYEDA*; J NOR FAIZAH*; J IDRIS**; N RAVI MENON*; Z BIDATTUL SYIRAT‡; M ROPANDI* and ANAFIAH HAMZAH‡‡

Chem­i­cal fer­tilis­ers con­tribute sig­nif­i­cantly to palm oil’s cost of pro­duc­tion. There are also con­cerns that the uncon­trolled use of chem­i­cal fer­tilis­ers can have neg­a­tive impli­ca­tions on the envi­ron­ment. Many stud­ies have eval­u­ated alter­na­tives not only to reduce costs but also to avoid com­pli­ca­tions asso­ci­ated with envi­ron­men­tal pol­lu­tion. This study inves­ti­gated the via­bil­ity of ver­mi­com­post cul­ti­vated in a media com­pris­ing oil palm empty fruit bunch (OPEFB) and anaer­o­bi­cally digested palm oil mill efflu­ent (POME). Both these sub­stances are abun­dantly avail­able in Malaysia as by-products of the palm oil indus­try. Ver­mi­com­post appli­ca­tion tri­als were con­ducted to study the growth pat­tern of the fronds and the stem heights of oil palm seedlings dur­ing the one-year trial period. Three dis­tinct regimes were selected for these tri­als based on three dif­fer­ent com­po­si­tions of ver­mi­com­post: 100% OPEFB and POME (coded as V1), a mix­ture com­prised of V1 and a chem­i­cal fer­tiliser at a ratio of 70%:30%, and 100% chem­i­cal fer­tiliser. The three fer­tiliser regimes were applied to three batches of three-month old oil palm seedlings at an oil palm nurs­ery. The first regime, which involved treat­ment with 100% V1, showed a sig­nif­i­cant increase in the num­ber of fronds (8.0), as well as in their heights (98.1 cm), at the end of the trial period. The results were com­pa­ra­ble with those obtained for the other two regimes. The fronds, stems and roots (dry weight) of the V1 seedlings weighed 647 g, 274 g and 150 g per plant, respec­tively. These fig­ures were higher than the cor­re­spond­ing val­ues for the seedlings treated with 100% chem­i­cal fer­tiliser. The cation exchange capac­ity of the soil in which the V1 seedlings grew was also found to be higher than that of the soil treated with the other two regimes. There­fore, this study sug­gests that V1 exhibits good poten­tial to be a viable sub­sti­tute for chem­i­cal fertilisers.

Keywords: , , ,

Author Information
* Malaysian Palm Oil Board, 6 Persiaran Institusi, Bandar Baru Bangi, 43000 Kajang, Selangor, Malaysia. E-mail: nahrul.hayawin@mpob.gov.my


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