The Effect of Microbe Plus and Phosphorus Fertilizers on the Vegetative Growth of Oil Palm (Elaesis guineensis, Jacq.) Seedlings

Main Article Content

E. Oppong
A. Opoku
N. Ewusi-Mensah
F. Danso
H. O. Tuffour
A. Abubakari
C. G. Kyere
P. Atta Poku Snr


The main objective of this study was to improve the growth of oil palm seedlings by using microbe plus to enhance phosphorous availability from rock phosphate under oil palm nursery was evaluated at Oil Palm Research Institute of Ghana, Kade-Kumasi. The study consisted of 16 treatments replicated 3 times in a 4 × 4 factorial experiment arranged in Randomize Complete Block Design. The factors tested were: Phosphate fertilizers (Phosphate only, triple superphosphate, super rock phosphate and Togo rock phosphate) and microbe plus rates (0, 50, 100 and 150%). Data was collected on leaf area, leaf area index and dry matter production. All data obtained were subjected to analysis of variance (ANOVA) using GENSTAT Version 11.1 (2008). The results showed that the P fertilizers and microbe plus applied alone or their interactions had no significant (P=.05) effect on leaf area and leaf area index values, however, dry matter produced was significantly (P=.05) different from each other. TSPMP150 treated seedlings produced significantly (P=.05) the highest dry weight; 42% increase over the control (No phosphate and microbe plus). The complementary use of microbe plus with triple superphosphate or Senegal rock phosphate proved to be the best options in terms of the parameters measured than the triple superphosphate. Microbe plus can therefore be used in combination with rock phosphate to improve phosphate availability. Field experiment is suggested to validate the effect of microbe plus and these rock phosphates on the performance of oil palm, whereas, additional studies with different application rates, both at nursery and at the field, are recommended.

Oil palm, phosphorous, rock phosphate, micro plus, triple superphosphate.

Article Details

How to Cite
Oppong, E., Opoku, A., Ewusi-Mensah, N., Danso, F., Tuffour, H. O., Abubakari, A., Kyere, C. G., & Snr, P. A. P. (2020). The Effect of Microbe Plus and Phosphorus Fertilizers on the Vegetative Growth of Oil Palm (Elaesis guineensis, Jacq.) Seedlings. Asian Journal of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, 5(4), 1-8.
Original Research Article


Cochard B, Adon B, Kouame KR, Durand-Gasselin T, Amblard PH. Intérêts des semences commerciales améliorées de palmier à huile (Elaeisguineensis Jacq.). OCL. 2001;8:654-658.

Oil world annual report; 2008.

Ofosu-Badu K, Sarpong D. Oil palm industry growth in Africa: A value chain and smallholder study for Ghana, In: Rebuilding West Africa’s Food Potential, A. Elbehri (ed.). FAO/IFAD; 2013.

Ministry of Food and Agriculture, MoFA. Programme for the Promotion of Perennial Crops in Ghana; 2013.

Ministry of Food and Agriculture, MoFA. Brief on the Oil Palm Sector in Ghana; 2014.

Omoti U. Fertilizer use economy in the oil palm in Nigeria through nutrition recycling. Proceeding of the International Conference on Palm and Palm Products, NIFOR. 1989;218-231.

Imogie AE, Oviasogie PO, Udosen CV, Ejedegba BO, Nwawe A. Evaluation of some locally sourced phosphate rocks for oil palm production. Journal of Soil Science and Environmental Management. 2011;2(6):153-158.

Sangakkara UR, Richner W, Schnelder MK, Stamp P. Impact of intercropping beans (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) and sun hemp (crotalaria juncea L.) on growth, yields and nitrogen fixation of maize (Zea mays L.) grown in the humid and tropics during the minor season. Maydike. 2003;48:233-238.

Mutert E, Esquìvez AS, De-los-santos OA, Cervantes EO. The oil palm nursery: Foundation for high production. Better Crops International. 1999;13(1):39-40.

International Atomic Energy Agency, (IAEA), Assessment of Soil Phosphorus Status and Management of Phosphatic Fertilisers to Optimise Crop Production. (IAEA-TECDOC-1272); 2002

Panhwar QA, Radzia O, Zaharah AR, Sariah M, Mohd-Razi I. Role of phosphate solubilizing bacteria on rock phosphate solubility and growth of aerobic rice. J. Environ. Biol. 2011;32:607-612.

Singh CP, Amberger A. Solubilization of rock phosphate by humic and fulvic acids extracted from straw compost. Agrochimica. 1998;41:221-228.

VanStraaten PV. Rocks for crops. Agro minerals of Sub-Sahara Africa. 2002;7.

Rodríguez H, Fraga R. Phosphate solubilizing bacteria and their role in plant growth promotion. Biotechnol. Advance. 1999;17:319-339.

Whitelaw MA. Growth promotion of plants inoculated with phosphate solubilizing fungi. Adv. Agron. 2000;69:99-144.

Vassilev N, Vassileva M, Fenice M, Federici F. Immobilized cell technology applied in solubilization of insoluble inorganic (rock) phosphates and P plant acquisition. Bioresour. Technol. 2001;79: 263-271.

Arcand MM, Schneider KD. Plant-and microbial-based mechanisms to improve the agronomic effectiveness of phosphate rock: A review. Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciências. 2006;78(4):791-807.

FAO. Soil Map of the World- Revised Lengend, 4th Draft. FAO. Rome. Fertilizer Research. 1990;36:141–150.

Hardon JJ, Williams CN, Watson I. Leaf area and yield of oil palm in Malaysia. Expl. Agric. 1969;5:25-32.

Nelson DW, Sommers LE. Total carbon, organic carbon and organic matter In: Page AL, Miller RH, Keeney DR. (Eds.), Methods of soil Analysis, Part 2. Chemical and Microbiological Properties, 2nded. (Agronomy series no. 9) ASA, SSSA, Madison, Wis. 1982;539-579.

Bray RH, Kurtz LT. Determination of the total organic and available forms of phosphorus in soil. Soil Sci. 1945;599:39-45.

Bouyoucos GJ. Hydrometer method improved for making particle size analysis of soils. Agronomy Journal. 1962;53:464-465.

GenStat Release 12.1 ed. VSN International Ltd. UK, 2012.

Steel GD, Torrie JH. Principles and procedures of statistics. McGraw Hill Co. Inc. New York; 1980.

Mohd RMN, Mohd HH. The role of leaf area index in oil palm. Oil palm bulletin. Malaysian palm oil board Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. 2004;48:11-16.

Bello WB, Ogunjinmi SO, Ajani AO. Comparative evaluation of different levels and types of Organo-mineral fertilizers on growth and performance of nursery palm (Elaeis guineensis. Jacq). Agric. Biol. J. N. Am., 2014;5(4):175-182.

Dwarko A. Effects of moisture and different shade regimes on two progenies of oil palm seedlings. MPhil theses submitted to the University of Ghana; 2001.

Subronto T, Taniputra B, Manurury M. Correlation between vegetative characteristics of oil palm in the nursery and yield. Bulletin-Perkebunan. 1989;20: 107-116.

Isenmila AE, Omoti U, Oviasogie PO. Development of alternative, cheap, easily available and affordable fertilizers from local rock minerals for the palms. The Journey sofar. Paper presented at NIFOR Seminar. 2006;1-20.

Abidemi A, Obigbesan GO. Response of polybag oil palm seedlings to rock phosphates in two benchmark soils. A paper presented at the annual conference of the Nigerian Soil Science Society Conference, held 5th-11th November, Benin City. 1999;1-16.

Vernieri P, Borghesi E, Ferrante A, Magnani G. Application of biostimulants in floating system for improving rocket quality. Journal of food, Agric. and Environ. 2005;3-4:86-88.

Albregts EE, Howard CM, Chandler C, Mitchell RL. Effects of biostimulants on fruiting of strawberry. Proc. Fla. State. Hort. Soc. 1988;101:370-372.

Fraser GA, Percival GC. The influence of biostimulants on growth and vitality of three urban tree species following transplanting. Arboricultural Journal. 2003;27(1):43-57.

Obigbesan GO, Akinrinde EA. Suitability of phosphate rocks for direct use as P sources for crop production. Nig. J. Soil Sci. 2000;12:88-99.

Goh KJ, Härdter R. In Fairhurst TH, Härdter R (Eds.), Managing oil palm for large and sustainable yields. PPI/PPIC-IPI, Singapore. 2003;191-230.