1.1 BackgroundOne of the edible fig fruits species in Ficus genus is Ficuscarica or common figthat had been commercialized and consume throughout the world for it fruitsthat has unique taste besides it medicinal values.
In the year 2016 alone,around 308460 ha of area in the world is harvested with yield of 34055 hg/hathat has world production of 1050459 tonnes which the top three major productions are fromTurkey, Egypt and Morocco(FAO, 2017). Furthermore, the fruit also had their own name of sura in the holy Qur’an which is At-Tin meaning The Figs, theninety-fifth sura containing eight verses (Quran.com, 2016). In Malaysia, entrepreneurs andbusinessmen started to venture in the commercialization of fig’s plantationindustry.
The emergence of company like Saf Fa Figs Garden that focus on thesefruit plantation as well as collaboration between research university andprivate company like Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) with Fig Direct underMinistry of Agriculture (MoA) memorandum agreement (Muhamad Nazmi, 2016, Mac 9)will push the figs industries potential in Malaysia even further. This willpromote the involvement of science to improve the production quality of figs.F.carica has the originof West Asia and distributed all around Mediterranean region (Morton, 1987) whichhas similar equator climate to Malaysia in some extent which is always in sunnyweather but different in the later wet heavy rain season.
This is showdifferent in the humidity level where Malaysia is more humid than the originthat may induce increase in the infection of diseases. Moreover,there also various native Ficusspecies in Malaysia such as F. auriculatathat also bears edible fruits. Thecommercialize F. carica and native F. auriculata has the potential to begrafted together. Grafting is one of method to improve hardiness because thesource of rootstock is from native or hardy mother plant.
Good graft compatibilitydetermines by many factors and one of them is good rootstock. Therefore, F. auriculata is as rootstock and F. carica is as scion.Rootstockquality is vital basic to grafting as similar important as good scion. The typeof medium and type of cutting that strongly suitable to produce clonalrootstock are few of important factors to be considered. 1.2 Problem statementAs the commercializationof figs in Malaysia will in mass, the production of F.
carica will become more inefficient because of the problem insensitive roots which may affect the nutrient absorption that later obstructsthe overall growth. Thus, the grafting to native species may help overcome thisproblem.Inaddition, the F. auriculata isgynodioecy, the syconium can pollinate without pollinators and later the seedsproduced are not viable. It possible to produce seeds but Ficus genus has specific pollinator for each Ficus species.
On the contrary, the pollinator is unavailable inthe sample environment made the viable seeds could not be produce. This lead tothe best available method to produce the best rootstock of F. auriculata is from stem cuttings.
Nonetheless,the information of suitable medium type and suitable cutting type for native Ficus species as rootstock production islacking as reference. Thereby, the present study is an attempt to get basicknowledge about the suitable medium type and cutting type to produce goodrootstock of F. auriculata as native Ficus species. 1.
3 Objectives and hypothesisThe objectiveof this research is to determine which type of soil media in relation with typeof stem cutting are the best to produce good rootstock from F. auriculata. Furthermore, the fastestreadily mature plant sample also can be determined for quick proceed asrootstock into grafting that will shorten the time acquired. The informationabout survival rate of cuttings also can be obtained from this study.Thisresearch is hypothesizing that hardwood cutting of peat moss medium has thebest result and the fastest time to achieve readily mature plant sample.
Infacts, hardwood cutting has high carbohydrate storage and peat moss has themost suitable moisture content as well as organic content.