Oil palm (Elaeis guineensis) is widely grown in southern Thailand as an important economic crop for bioenergy, human consumption and industrial use. Reliable production of young oil palm trees is limited and the plants are expensive because it takes up to 8-12 months for germination
to occur. In our study, control seed kernels imbibed with normal water (NW) had zero germination even after 56 days. Kernels were immersed in magnetically-treated water (MTW) for 48 hours to imbibe. The treated kernels were placed in germinators and sprayed with MTW or NW. Oil palm kernels
imbibed and watered with MTW had 100% germination within 35 days. Comparison of seeds (a) imbibed with MTW and watered with MTW, (b) imbibed with MTW and then watered with NW and (c) imbibed with NW and then watered with MTW showed that the critical treatment stage was the imbibition step.
Simply soaking seeds or kernels in MTW for an imbibition treatment is a simple technique to apply in nurseries. Any gains of applying MTW after the imbibition step lead to only modest increases in germination rate.
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Document Type: Research Article
July 1, 2016
This article was made available online on July 4, 2016 as a Fast Track article with title: "Effect of magnetically treated water on germination and seedling growth of oil palm (<i>Elaeis guineensis</i>)".
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