Problem Soils: Conclusions

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Proper understanding of soils and crops has allowed us to exploit marginal soils successfully in Malaysia. Upon corrections or alleviation of the soil constraints, the oil palm performances can generally match those on better soil types. More than one soil management approaches are usually required and these must be implemented correctly and interactively. Among others, good timing is also essential to ensure success.

It must be cautioned that cultivation of oil palms on marginal soils entails higher cost, difficult inputs, good managerial skill and exposes the planters to higher risk and poorer competitiveness. It is therefore advisable to regard planting on marginal soils as a last resort rather than an opportunity for development and business.