Evaluation of transplanted bare-rooted cocoa seedlings for enhanced field establishment under different preservation methods
Different preservation techniques were tried to determine the most suitable method of keeping bare-rooted cocoa seedlings prior transplanting. Preservation days before transplanting were determined. There were significant differences (P<0.05) in the leaf number and leaf area of the seedlings eight weeks after transplanting (WAT). Seedling height also differed significantly (P<0.05) in uprooted ones especially from fourth week of transplanting. Soaking the roots of the seedlings in water also recorded higher leaf abscission rates than those wrapped in wet mud. The seedlings whose roots were wrapped in wet mud for twenty-four hours before transplanting recorded the highest rate of leaf emergence after one year of transplanting. The uprooted seedlings soaked in water for 24 and 48 hours and those whose root soil was eroded with water and soaked for 48 hours, recorded 16.7% mortality and 83.3 survival while all the other treatments recorded 0% mortality and 100% survival. There were significant differences (P< 0.05) in both percentage mortality and survival of the seedlings of the different preservation methods.
Keywords: Bare-root transplanting; cocoa seedlings; uprooting; ball of earth; wet mud; soil erosion; storage period
Moor Journal of Agricultural Research Vol. 6 (1&2) 2005 pp. 24-29