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.
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.
NOTE: I need to update this article today (07/04/2020), due to calls and inquiries on how to sprout palm nuts since the day this article was published.
I will like to use this opportunity to enlighten the audiences on the major limitation of sprouting the oil palm nut yourself.
First, the END product or result of this process will no longer be an F1 (first filial) generation. The Original Tenera specie is an F1 (first filial) generation as it was obtained from the crosses of two different parents. So, the yield can never be like the original Hybrid parent as there will be reduction in yield.