BENEFICIAL MICROBIAL POPULATION OF OIL PALM PLANTATIONK. SUDHA, S. SUNITHA AND P. THOMAS VARGHESE
The population of bacteria, fungi, actinornvcetes, phosphate solubilising micro organisms and free living nitrogen fixing bacteria in oil palm plantation were assessed. Plantation soil especially rhizosphere haboured rich beneficial flora. On the whole, beneficial population was also found increasing with organic additions to the rhizosphere. The status of soil microflora is important in the adoption of an integrated nutrient management system which was proved to increase the yield in similar plantations (Geonadi, 1998). Thus it is suggested, considering microbial activity as the index of soil health, adoption of a fertiliser strategy giving priority to enriched compost is promising for a sustained production in oil palm plantations.
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