How to Germinate Your Own Oil Palm Seeds

germinated nut
sprouted nuts

In order to raise your own oil palm seeds yourself, you need to get the high yield seed from the Nigerian Institute for Oil Palm Research (NIFOR) or any other places you can find it and make it germinate.

Note you can’t just take the seed and plant directly on the field like your maize seed. The oil palm seed required special care and treatment because if you do not take care of the seeds, it will take several years before they germinate. In order to ensure that your oil palm seed germinate fast, the seeds should be kept in a very hot room. Doing this we make the seeds to germinate in about 90 to 100 days (smiling).

Do you have the patient to wait for over 3months? If yes, then continue reading.

germinated nut

When the seeds have germinated, you transfer them into small plastic container with black loam manured soil. They will grow new leaf every month. The young seedlings will stays in the plastic container for about 4 to 5 months. When the seedling begins to bring out new leaf with two points you can then start transplanting to the nursery.

In raising oil palm seeds, you germinate it first in the pre nursery before transplanting to the nursery. The seedlings will stay in the nursery for 1 year before transplanting it to the field.

By that time, they will have about 15 green leaves. This is when you can finally transplant them into your prepared farm land.

Is it compulsory to wait till the seedlings have 15green leaves? Well, doing so we reduce mortality rate (probability of seedling drying out when you move it to field and also prevent transplanting shock)

The overall period it will take before the seedlings are transplanted into the farm is 15 to 17 months old.

You don’t really need to go through all this stress when you can just go to the agricultural institute to buy already prepared seedling at about N300 per seedling, before it was usually sold for N120. If you are planting 10,000 palms, you will have to have 300 x 10,000 = N 3 Million. So, germinating your own seedling is less costly but takes some times.


  1. Hi, when you say already prepared seedling that is sold at the 300 naira do you mean that before it is taken to the nursery or to the field ?

    As in does it mean the seedling that has got already the 15 leaves ?

    • Already prepared seedling, it means that the seedling has been raised from sprouted nut to seedling, and all these activities are done in the Nursery.
      You move your seedling from the nursery to the field after spending at least 7months in the nursery. The time of planting in Nursery to transplanting on the field should be at least 7 months. It can even be in the nursery for a year before transplanting.

  2. to get the nut to sprout into a seedling, you said to keep it in a very hot room. is it kept in a nylon bag? is it kept in soil? is it in a metal container? are we trying to dry the seed out and in the process it germinates?

    • Nut to sprouted nut.
      thick Nylon bag. No, we not trying to dry the seed. The seed must be moist (part of the condition required for seed germination).
      You may add peat or sawdust inside the nylon bag as well. ensure it doesn’t dry out and keep in a dark room.
      All these processes is to break dormancy and hasten germination

  3. Good day my Brother and thank you for this post.
    My question is how do I get the nut out from the shaft, is it through the process of seed decay.

    Expecting your reply
    Remain bless.

    • It’s quite expensive. That is why we often advise our small scale and low budget client to plant the Tenera. Because we only supply the supergene for clients who needs large quantity

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