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Evaluation of different compound fertilizers for use in oil palm nursery

MM Ugbah
SN Utulu


The standard NPKMg 12:12:17:2 compound fertilizer (SF) for oil palm nurseries is not always available when needed. Evaluation of other compound fertilizers – NKP 15:15:15 and NPK 20:10:10 – compared with the SF were carried out in the main nursery at NIFOR to ascertain their suitability and rates of application. Based on rates recommended for the SF, all three fertilizers were compared at two levels each, at equivalent rates of nitrogen. The fertilizers were applied in three equal splits at 2, 5 and 8 months after planting. Results show that the three types of compound fertilizers tested were suitable for use in oil palm nursery, as they showed significant increases in plant height, stem girth, number of leaves, leaf area and plant dry weight over no fertilizer treatment; but did not differ significantly in these values among themselves. Also, while transplantable and surviving seedlings were 33 and 63 percent in the no fertilizer treatment these values were significantly higher at over 70 and 95 percent, respectively, for the various rates of the compound fertilizers. Although the fertilizers did not differ from each other in these growth parameters, the SF slightly enhanced growth at the higher rate of 42 g/seedling, while the other fertilizers slightly depressed growth at higher rates. These translate to using the SF at 28 to 42 g per seedling, NPK 15:15:15 at 22.4 g per seedling and NPK 20:10:10: at 16.8 g per seedling..

Journal of Agriculture, Forestry and the Social Sciences Vol. 3 (2) 2005: pp.65-70