Saturday

Solomon Islands

Guadalcanal Island, picture R. Bourdeix
Solomon Islands groups six major islands and over 900 smaller islands in Oceania lying to the east of Papua New Guinea and northwest of Vanuatu. The country's capital, Honiara, is located on the island of Guadalcanal. Most of the Population of the Solomon Islands live in rural areas. Agriculture contributes 38% of the country’s GDP. It is estimated that nearly 59000 ha are under coconut. Most Coconuts are grown in the western province areas. Fluctuating prices and production levels has meant that the value of coconut exports has not been steady. A high level of senile trees (up to 70%), is one of the challenges that will need to be addressed.
Dr R. Bourdeix visited the Solomon Islands from to 27th February to 14th of March 2018. He visited the islands of Guadalcanal, Rennell and Yandina.

Preparation of the training package

Design and implementation of seed supply systems
Past seed supply system
About Solomon and Rennell Island Tall varieties
As shown in the detailed descriptions above, the evaluation of the Solomon Island Tall in Côte d’Ivoire proven that this variety is among the most productive with Tall-type. Production is excellent from the 6th to the 9th year, producing 51-97 fruits per palm per year. It then increases further and fluctuates between 91 and 131 fruits up to the 18th year. In terms of copra weight per ha, the SIT is the highest yielding traditional variety observed in Côte d’Ivoire. From the 9th to 18th year, it has produced an average of 2.9 t of copra per ha, i.e. 80% more than the local West African Tall variety. Only hybrids reach or exceed that level of production. BUT what was received in Côte d’Ivoire is NOT the ordinary Solomon Tall, but the Solomon Tall variety bred at the Yandina Research centre. Very probably, researchers in Yandina conducted several cycles of breeding to improve the Solomon Island Tall.


Thus, it is of crucial importance to retrieve information and map of the Yandina research centre, and to locate the plots where this improved Solomon Tall is still growing. This is the place from where seednuts should be sourced. The difference in production with ordinary Solomon Tall could be huge, probably about one ton of copra per hectare per year.

See the detailed descrition of the MAREN hybrid at the end of the publication devoted to "False and true ideas about coconut hybrids". Here under is a short funny video from Brazil showing coconut hybrids having the Rennell Island Tall (from Solomon Islands) as male parent. 




Present seed supply system
World Heritage Program in Rennell Island 

Proposed contribution of CIDP to the national coconut seed supply system

Train the trainers meeting and public lecture

Other relevant information
Agricultural research and training centers in the Solomon