SOIL CHARACTERISTICS AND PLANT NUTRIENT STATUS IN THE ROOT (WILT) AFFECTED AREAS OF HUMID TROPICSJeena Mathew, V. Krishnakumar, Merin Babu A., Joseph Rajkumar, Anitha Kumari, P. and C.G. Narayanan Namboothiri
Field survey was conducted in the emerging areas of root (wilt) disease of coconut in Kerala and Tamulnadu during the period 2012-2014. The areas selected in Kerala were Kozhinjampara and Edava whereas in Tamil Nadu the areas were Cumbum and Colachel. In each sites, two gardens were selected, one with apparently healthy palms and the other with different intensities of root (wilt) disease. Soil and leaf samples were collected from the selected palms for the estimation of soil properties as well as on the leaf nutrient status. Site specific variation was prevalent in each site with respect to soil properties. With respect to Cumbum and Colachel, imbalance in base saturation and heavy texture of the soil was observed as the soil constraint. Deficiency of potassium (45.78 ppm) and magnesium (24.28 ppm) was observed in the region with diseased palms in Edava. Adoption of suitable management practices considering the inherent soil constraints may enhance the productivity of palms in the emerging areas of root (wilt) disease of coconut.
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