Sustainable production of coconut in Sarawak : nutrient demand, pest management and related implications

Lai, Kui Fong (2005) Sustainable production of coconut in Sarawak : nutrient demand, pest management and related implications. Masters thesis, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak.

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Coconut is a crop that is socially important in Malaysia. However, it has declined in importance due to low competitiveness and if left unchecked, is a threat to the social security as it is an important food in the local diet. Dwarf coconut cultivation to meet the demand of young tender coconut, an emerging health food is a feasible component of the coconut industry. Premium value can be obtained from selling young tender coconut, thereby boosting the income of the coastal rural small holder farmers. However, the critical factors affecting the cultivation of dwarf coconut are soil types, nutrient and pest occurrence. The emerging threats of pest outbreak in the recent years are cause for concern, including the coconut leaf miner, the two-coloured coconut beetle and the rhinoceros beetle. During outbreak, control becomes necessary. Trunk injection of systemic pesticide such as methamidophos is considered the practical and cost effective method and is recommended for mature palms. This study is an attempt to assess such factors, in particular soil-nutrient-crop relationship, and the implications of using the precision pesticide application technique for pest control during outbreak. The studies attempt to provide some insights and findings, to come up with possible suggestions and recommendations for sustained production of coconut. From the multilocational trials to assess the performance under different soil types and levels of nutrients, the performance of dwarf coconut is found, with good nutrient input of ground magnesium limestone and NPK, to produce well under Pendam soils, a Marine Gley soils used extensively for coconut cultivation. Under similar treatment, the crop produce fairly on Rampangi soil, a Thionic or an acid sulphate soils. To enhance productivity, more information on the soil-nutrient-crop relationship is needed for Rampangi and Sematan soils, the latter an Arenaceous soil traditionally grown with tall coconut. Studies on the residues in the plant parts after the trunk injection of methamidophos revealed that the pesticide has an immediate pest control effect as it is taking up within three hours to the shoot and the fronds, and is able to protect the fronds against coconut leaf miner for two months as the chemical persisted at significantly high level in the fronds during this period. The chemical is also found in the shoot within three hours after injection and persisted for a month, thus is toxic to pests including the two-coloured shoot feeding beetle and the rhinoceros shoot borer, as well as to any human who intends to harvest the shoot for salad or for cooking during the period. About 3-7 days after injection, methamidophos is found in the young tender coconut water and soft kernel up to a level of 0.05-0.15 mg/kg and the pesticide residue persisted for about 13 weeks or 91 days. For the old nuts, the residue is only detected in significant amount (above the MRL ofO.Olmg/k:g) one month after injection, and persisted for a duration of 112 days. Cash flow analyses indicated the financial return from per hectare of dwarf coconut is lucrative on Pendam soil, Asajaya (IRR of 23.8%) but not on Rampangi soil (IRR of7.9%).

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Additional Information: Thesis (M.Sc.) -- Universiti Malaysia Sarawak, 2005.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Coconut palm, coconut production, unimas, university, universiti, Borneo, Malaysia, Sarawak, Kuching, Samarahan, ipta, education, Postgraduate, research, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak
Subjects: S Agriculture > S Agriculture (General)
Divisions: Academic Faculties, Institutes and Centres > Faculty of Resource Science and Technology
Depositing User: Karen Kornalius
Date Deposited: 11 Jan 2017 02:26
Last Modified: 08 Jun 2020 17:07

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