Influence of integrated nutrient management and high density multi-species cropping system on soil properties, plant nutrition and yield in root (wilt) affected coconut palms

  • H.P. Maheswarappa
  • P. Anitha Kumari
  • P.G. Kamalakshiamma
  • M. Shanavas
Keywords: Integrated Nutrient Management, Cropping System, Soil Properties, Root (wilt), Nut Yield


A field experiment was conducted at Central Plantation Crops Research Institute (Regional Station), Kayamkulam, Kerala, India to study the effect of integrated nutrient management and high density multi-species cropping system in root (wilt) affected garden on root (wilt) index, yield of coconut palms and soil properties. The experimental results indicated that, there was improvement in soil properties like water holding capacity, organic carbon, major and micronutrient status of the soil due to adoption of integrated nutrient management practices and high density multi-species cropping system. There was improvement in the yield of the palms under different root (wilt) diseased palms coupled with reduction in root (wilt) indices due to reduction in root (wilt) symptoms especially yellowing.  The increase in nut yield (five years average) was to the tune of 54.5%, 52%, 48.3% and 40.9% under apparently healthy, disease early, disease middle and disease advanced palms in comparison with pre-experimental yield.  


Anonymous, 1986. Coconut root (wilt) disease-present status of research and management. Technical Bulletin No. 14. Central Plantation Crops Research Institute, Kasaragod, Kerala, India.
Anonymous, 1996. Coconut root (wilt) Survey, 18-19. Department of Agriculture, Government of Kerala, India.
Anonymous, 2003. Directorate of Economics and Statistics, Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India.
Antony, J. 1983. Microbiological activities in the root region of coconut under intercropping with tuber crops. Ph.D. Thesis, University of Kerala, Trivandrum.
Bavappa, K.V.A. and Jacob, V.J. 1982. High density multispecies cropping-A new approach to small scale farming in the tropics. World Crops 34(2):47-50.
Bavappa, K.V.A., Kailasam, C., Khader, K.B. A. Biddappa, C.C., Khan, H.H., Kasturi Bai, K.V., Ramadasan, A., Sundararaju, P., Bopaiah, B.M., George V. Thomas, Misra, L.P., Balasimha, D., Bhat, N.T. and Shama Bhat, K. 1986. Coconut and arecanut based high-density multispecies cropping system. J. Plant. Crops 14(2): 74-87.
Bopaiah, B.M. 1988. Microbiological studies in relation to high density multi-species cropping system in coconut. Ph.D. Thesis. University of Mysore, India.
Bopaiah, B.M. and Shetty, H.S. 1991. Soil microflora and biological activities in rhizospheres and root regions of coconut based multistoried cropping and coconut monocropping systems. Soil Biol. Biochem. 23(1): 89-94.
Cecil, R.S., Pillai, N.G., Mathew, A.S and Kamalakshi Amma, P.G. 1978. Effect of application of N,P,K, Ca and Mg on young west coast tall palms in the root (wilt) affected area, pp. 101-113. In: Proceedings of 1st Plantation Crops Symposium (PLACROSYM I). Indian Society for Plantation Crops, Kasaragod, India.
Hameed Khan, H., Biddappa, C.C., Joshi, O.P. and Cecil, S.R. 1985. Micronutrient distribution in the crowns of healthy and root (wilt) diseased palms. J. Plant. Corps 13: 66-68.
Jackson, M.L. 1973. Soil Chemical Analysis. Prentice Hall of India Pvt. Ltd., New Delhi.
KAU, 1996. Package of practices recommendations-Crops 1996. Directorate of Extension, Mannuthy, Thrissur, Kerala, India.
Keen, B.A. and Reczkowski, H. 1921. The relation between the clay content and certain physical properties of a soil. J. Agric. Sci. 11: 441-449.
Khader, K.B.A., Balasimha, D. and Bhat, N.T. 1992. Resources use in arecanut based high density multispecies cropping system. J. Plant. Crops 20 (Supplement): 19-24.
Kushwah, B.L., Nelliat, E.V., Markose, V.T. and Sunny, A.F. 1973. Rooting pattern of coconut. Indian J. Agron. 18: 71-74.
Lindsay, W.L. and Norvell, W.A. 1978. Development of a DTPA soil test for Zinc, Iron, Manganese and copper. Soil Sci. Soc. Amer. J. 42:421-428.
Liyanage, L.V.K., Jayasundera, H.P.S., Mathes, D.T. and Fernando, D.N.S. 1989. Integration of pasture, fodder and cattle in coconut small holdings. Cord 5(2): 53-67.
Liyanage, M.S. de and Dassanayake, K.B. 1993. Experience on coconut based farming system in Sri Lanka. pp. 357-368. In: Advances in Coconut Research and Development, M.K. Nair, H.H. Khan, P. Gopalasundaram and E.V.V. Bhaskara Rao (Eds.). Oxford and IBH Publishing Co. Ltd., New Delhi.
Maheswarappa, H.P., Anitha Kumari, P. and Sairam, C.V. 2003b. High density multi species cropping system for root (wilt) affected coconut gardens – Its impact on productivity and economic viability. J. Plant. Crops 31(1): 23-27.
Maheswarappa, H.P., Anitha Kumari, P., Kamalakshiamma, P.G. and Shanavas, M. 2003a. Cowpea (Vigna unguiculata ) as a low cost input green manure crop for basin management under coconut root (wilt) garden. Indian Cocon. J. 34(5): 11-13.
Manikandan, P., Joshi, O.P., Hameed Khan, H., Mohapatra, A.R. and Biddappa, C.C. 1985. Nutrient profile in an arecanut-cacao system on a laterite soil. Trop. Agric., Trinidad 64(1): 13-16.
Menon, K.S. and Nayar, T.V.S. 1978. Effect of intercropping with tuber crops in root (wilt) affected coconut gardens, pp. 416-424. In: Proceedings of PLASCROSYM I, Indian Society for Plantation Crops, Kasaragod, Kerala.
Muralidharan, A., Nair, M.G. and Jayashankar, N.P. 1986. Response of coconut root (wilt) disease to management practices. Indian Cocon. J. 17(1): 3-6.
Nair, P.K.R., Verma, R., Nelliat, E.V. and Bavappa, K.V.A. 1975. Beneficial effect of crop combination of coconut and cocoa. Indian J. Agric. Sci. 45: 165-171.
Nambiar C.K.B., Biddappa, C.C., Bopaiah, M.G., and Kailasam, C. 1989. Influence of high density multispecies cropping on the P and K forms in the soil. J. Plant. Corps 17(1): 36-43.
Nambiar, C.K.B., Hameed Khan, H., Joshi, O.P. and Pillai, N.G. 1983. A rational approach to the management of coastal sands for establishment and production of coconuts. J. Plant. Crops 11(1): 24-32.
Nambiar, P.T.N. and Pillai, N.G. 1985. A simplified method of indexing root (wilt) affected coconut palms. J. Plant. Crops 13(1): 35-37.
Pillai, N.G., Wahid, P.A., Kamala Devi, C.B., Ramanandan, P.L., Robert Cecil, S., Kamalakshi Amma, P.G., Mathew, A.S. and Nambiar, C.K.B. 1975. Mineral nutrition of root (wilt) affected coconut palm. Fourth session of FAO Technical Working Party on coconut production, protection and processing, Kingston, Jamaika.

Rajagopal, V. Sumathikuttyamma, B. and Patil, K.D. 1987b. Water relations of coconut palms affected with root (wilt) disease. New Phytology 105: 289-293.
Rajagopal, V., Mathew, C., Patil, K.D., and Abraham, A.J. 1986b. Studies on water uptake by root (wilt) diseased coconut palms. J. Plant. Crops 14: 19-24.
Rajagopal, V., Patil, K.D. and Sumathikutt-yamma, B. 1986a. Abnormal stomatal opening in coconut palms affected with root (wilt) disease. J. Experim. Bot. 37: 1398-1405.
Rajagopal, V., Patil, K.D., Mathew, C. and Sumathikuttyamma, B. 1987a. Physiological studies on root (wilt) diseased coconut palms under different management practices. J. Plant. Crops 16 (Suppl.): 47-53.
Rethinam, P., Antony, K.J. and Muralidharan, A. 1991. Management of coconut root (wilt) disease. p. 60. Second International Symposium of Coconut Research and Development. Abstract of paper CPCRI, Kasaragod, India.

Sahasranaman, K.N., Pillai, N.G., Jayashankar, N.P., Varkey, T., Kamalakshi Amma, P.G. and Radha, K. 1983. Mixed farming in coconut garden - Economics and its effect on root (wilt) disease, pp. 160-165. In: Coconut Research and Development (Ed.) N.M. Nayar, Wiley Eastern Ltd., New Delhi.
Thomas, George, V., George, Mathew and Shantaram, M.V. 1993. Effect of growing green manure legumes in the basins of root (wilt) affected coconut palms, pp. 421-422. In: Advances in Coconut Research and development, M.K. Nair, H.H. Khan, P. Gopalasundaram and E.V.V.B. Rao (Eds.). Oxford and IBH Publishing Co. Pvt. Ltd., New Delhi.
How to Cite
H.P. Maheswarappa, P. Anitha Kumari, P.G. Kamalakshiamma, & M. Shanavas. (2005). Influence of integrated nutrient management and high density multi-species cropping system on soil properties, plant nutrition and yield in root (wilt) affected coconut palms. CORD, 21(02), 34.