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Assessment of low frequency tapping systems with stimulation on Hevea in Southern Thailand

Sainoi T., Sdoodee S., Lacote R., Gohet E., Chantuma P.. 2016. In : CRRI and IRRDB International Rubber Conference 2016, Siem Reap, Cambodia. Siem Reap : CRRI; IRRDB, p. 172-182. International Rubber Conference, 2016-11-21/2016-11-25, Siem Reap (Cambodge).

Under the decline of rubber price and labour shortage, applying the low frequency tapping system (LFT) may be a choice to solve these problems for rubber smallholders. Therefore, the low frequency tapping system was tested in southern Thailand. An experiment was established using eight-year old trees of RRIM600 clone at the Thepa Research Station, Songkhla province. The experimental design was Randomized Complete Block Design with five treatments; T1: S/3 d1 2d/3, T2: S/2 d2, T3: S/2 d3 ET 2.5% Pa1(1) 8/y (m), T4: S/3 d2 ET 2.5% Pa1(1) 4/y (m) and T5: S/3 d3 ET 2.5% Pa1(1) 12/y (m) comprising three replications (elementary plot). There were 10 trees per treatment in each elementary plot. After 3 years tapping, low frequency tapping system, S/2 d3, with ethylene application 8 times per year provided the highest significant difference of latex production per tree and per tapping. Yield in cumulative latex production was nearly the same for all treatments. Low frequency tapping systems with stimulation showed no significant for total solid content and inorganic phosphorus content. They showed lower reduced thiol content and sucrose content than the other treatments with less or without stimulation. Bark consumption was logically reduced when using reduced tapping frequency. Girth increment showed not significant difference between treatments. However, the tapping panel dryness was related to ethylene application. At this time, in our local conditions of experimentation it seems that rubber smallholders in southern Thailand could use low frequency tapping systems with tailored ethylene stimulation to increase their daily productivity. It might be a way to try to solve the issue of the decline of rubber prices and labour shortage.

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