Coconut- Planting activities
Coconut is propagated through seeds. Around 70 plants can be accommodated in an acre. The ideal time of planting is May-June. In low-lying areas, plant the seedlings in September after the cessation of heavy rains is recommended.
In case of seeds collected from own farm, ensure the selected mother palms should be regular bearer with yield above 80 nuts /annum and age around 20 years.
Nine to 12 month old seedlings are normally selected for planting. Such seedlings will have six to eight leaves. The collar girth will be 10-12 cm. Another indicator is early splitting of leaves. Seeds that fail to germinate beyond six months should be rejected.
Pits of average size 1m x 1m x 1 m are taken for planting. The spacing of coconut ranges from 7.5 m to 9 m depending on method of planting.
In lateritic areas, common salt @ 2 kg per pit should be applied on the pit to improve soil conditions. Common salt is to be applied about six months prior to planting.
The pits should be filled up with top soil to a height 60 cm below the ground level. Organic manure @ 25 kg/plant should be applied at the time of planting.
In low lying lands, take shallow pits and as the plant grows, raise the ground level by adding silt and sand so as to cover the entire bole of the palm.
Burial of two layers of husks in the pits will be useful for moisture conservation. The concave side of the husk should face upward.