The residual levels and persistence of thiram in the soil, water and oil palm seedling leaves were investigated under field conditions. The experimental plots were carried out on a clay loam soil and applied with three treatments namely; manufacturer's recommended dosage (25.6 g a.i. plot-1), manufacturer's double recommended dosage (51.2 g a.i. plot-1), and control (water) were applied. Thiram residues were detected in the soil from day 0 to day 3 in the range of 0.22-27.04 mg kg-1. Low concentrations of thiram were observed in the water and leave samples in the range of 0.27-2.52 mg L-1 and 1.34-12.28 mg kg-1, respectively. Results have shown that thiram has a rapid degradation and has less persistence due to climatic factors. These findings suggest that thiram is safe when applied at manufacturer's recommended dosage on oil palm seedlings due to low residual levels observed in soil and water bodies.
Hexaconazole is a potential fungicide to be used in the oil palm plantation for controlling the basal stem root (BSR) disease caused by Ganoderma boninense. Therefore, the dissipation rate of hexaconazole in an oil palm agroecosystem under field conditions was studied. Two experimental plots were treated with hexaconazole at the recommended dosage of 4.5 g a.i. palm(-1) (active ingredient) and at double the recommended dosage (9.0 g a.i. palm(-1)), whilst one plot was untreated as control. The residue of hexaconazole was detected in soil samples in the range of 2.74 to 0.78 and 7.13 to 1.66 mg kg(-1) at the recommended and double recommended dosage plots, respectively. An initial relatively rapid dissipation rate of hexaconazole residues occurred but reduced with time. The dissipation of hexaconazole in soil was described using first-order kinetics with the value of coefficient regression (r (2) > 0.8). The results indicated that hexaconazole has moderate persistence in the soil and the half-life was found to be 69.3 and 86.6 days in the recommended and double recommended dosage plot, respectively. The results obtained highlight that downward movement of hexaconazole was led by preferential flow as shown in image analysis. It can be concluded that varying soil conditions, environmental factors, and pesticide chemical properties of hexaconazole has a significant impact on dissipation of hexaconazole in soil under humid conditions.
The mobility of (14)C-chlorpyrifos using soil TLC was investigated in this study. It was found that chlorpyrifos was not mobile in clay, clay loam and peat soil. The mobility of (14)C-chlorpyrifos and non-labelled chlorpyrifos was also tested with silica gel TLC using three types of developing solvent hexane (100%), hexane:ethyl acetate (95:5, v/v); and hexane:ethyl acetate (98:2, v/v). The study showed that both the (14)C-labelled and non-labelled chlorpyrifos have the same Retardation Factor (Rf) for different developing solvent systems. From the soil column study on mobility of chlorpyrifos, it was observed that no chlorpyrifos residue was found below 5 cm depth in three types of soil at simulation rainfall of 20, 50 and 100 mm. Therefore, the soil column and TLC studies have shown similar findings in the mobility of chlorpyrifos.
Ganoderma boninense is a fungus that can affect oil palm trees and cause a serious disease called the basal stem root (BSR). This disease causes the death of more than 80% of oil palm trees midway through their economic life and hexaconazole is one of the particular fungicides that can control this fungus. Hexaconazole can be applied by the soil drenching method and it will be of interest to know the concentration of the residue in the soil after treatment with respect to time. Hence, a field study was conducted in order to determine the actual concentration of hexaconazole in soil. In the present paper, a new approach that can be used to predict the concentration of pesticides in the soil is proposed. The statistical analysis revealed that the Exploratory Data Analysis (EDA) techniques would be appropriate in this study. The EDA techniques were used to fit a robust resistant model and predict the concentration of the residue in the topmost layer of the soil.