DETERMINATION OF THE PHYSICOCHEMICAL PROPERTIES OF THE PRE-TREATED OIL PALM EMPTY FRUIT BUNCH VERMICOMPOST TOWARDS POTENTIAL NUTRIENT SOURCE FOR PLANT GROWTHAHMAD NAIM AHMAD YAHAYA, MD. SOHRAB HOSSAIN, MUZAFAR ZULKIFLI AND ROBERT EDYVEAN
The present study was conducted to determine the physicochemical properties of pre-treated oil palm empty fruit bunch (EFB) vermicompost with Pleurotus sajor-caju (P. sajor-caju). Various analytical methods have been utilized to determine the physicochemical properties in vermicompost produced from pre-treated EFB with P. sajor-caju; such as pH, temperature, electrical conductivity (EC), and redox potential (RP), nutrient compositions and trace elements concentration; which were carried out in large scale vermicomposting trials (LSVT) for the first 14 weeks. The pH of the vermicompost increased with increasing composting time. There were no noteworthy diferences observed in the case of the temperature, EC, and RP between the different LSVTs of the treated EFB vermicompost. Determination of the vermicompost nutrient compositions in the vermicompost of the treated EFB after 30 weeks revealed that the total organic carbon (TOC) and carbon and nitrogen (C:N) ratio decreased with increasing composting time, and the total kjeldahl nitrogen (TKN) increased. Determination of the mineral compostion in the vermicompost revealed that the pre-treated EFB increased the mineral compostion. There were also trace elements in the EFB vermicompost. However, the trace elements concentration was below the detection limit of the British Standard Institutions Public Available Specification standard set in 2011. The finding of the present study reveals the possiblity of the sustainabale utilization of EFB via vermicomposting.
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