Andisols Water Retention Under Peasant Oil Palm Plantation
Available water soil is one of the critical factors that influence oil palm growth and production. This research used field survey method. Soil samples were taken in the field and then analyzed in the laboratory using the membrane plate apparatus for assessment of the filed capacity and the permanent wilting. This research aimed to obtain data about water retention variability of Andisols in oil palm plantation of peasants on various age levels of oil palm in Pasaman sub-district, West Sumatera. The advantage of this research was to find out the effect of different age levels of oil palm on soil water retention and other physical soil properties in Andisols. This research identified water retention of the soil was between 21.2-42.7% volume with the bulk density (BD) was between 0.31-0.83 g/cc. The results showed that there is no significant difference between the oil palm ages (5-10 years, 10-15 years, and above 15 years) on either the soil water retention or the soil bulk density for both the topsoil (0-20 cm) and the subsoil (20-40 cm). This research indicated that there is no effect of the oil palm age on the soil bulk density, field capacity, permanent wilting point, and plant available water. This research suggested that the soil should be saturated with high water content since West Sumatera has very high rainfall intensity so that the situation can be an advantage for oil palm growth over the years.
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Published by INSIGHT - Indonesian Society for Knowledge and Human Development