ABSTRACT The objective of the study was to establish approximate relationships between yield and soil nutrients in oil palm production. The study was conducted in Nigerian Institute for Oil Palm Research (NIFOR) substation Ibesit ekoi in Oruk Anam Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State Nigeria. Soil, rainfall and yield data were collected from oil palm plantation established 49, 29, 9 and 0 (control) years ago in an area underlain by coastal plain sands. Descriptive statistics, analysis of variance and multiple stepwise regression analysis were used to study variations, effect of land use on soil properties at different depths and contributions of various soil nutrients at different depths to the yield (fresh fruit bunch ‘FFB’ and palm oil) of oil palm. Results of coefficient of variability revealed that approx. 45.5% of the variables were highly variable including available phosphorus, extractable zinc, FFB and palm oil, while others were either least or moderately variable. Oil palm trees influenced soil development with its effect on silt content at 30 - 60 cm depth. Uptake of phosphorus in oil palm land use system decreases with depth. This was further confirmed by the relative contribution of available phosphorus to FFB yield that decreased from the surface of the soil downwards. Extractable zinc contents of oil palm land use were not significantly different from each other (ranging between 9.65 and 7.84 mg·kg–1) but significantly different from the control (23.99 mg·kg–1). In the modeling process, it was observed that the absolute contribution of texture was minimal while exchangeable sodium was highest (i.e. 66.5 percent) in the quantity of oil palm production. Also extractable copper and zinc were found to have made large contributions to FFB and oil palm. Oil palm (Elaeis guineensis) is a high-yielding source of edible and technical oils but requires proper knowledge and precise administration of nutrient demands for management of a major production constraint which is soil fertility.
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