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C-POM - THE COIR PITH ORGANIC MANURE
Coir Board, after long years of R&D has invented a technology for bioconversion of coir pith into Coir Pith Organic Manure which provided a solution to the problem of accumulating coir pith in the coir fibre extraction units. "PITHPLUS" An edible mushroom spawn speeds up composting process of coir pith and leads to 42% reduction in volume of coir pith. This mushroom belongs to the fungal group Basidiomycetes capable to detoxifying phenolics and producing biopolymerising enzymes. Cellulosic compounds present in coir pith supports the initial growth of this fungus and act as co-substances for lignin degradation. The degradation of coir pith by PITHPLUS as marked by the increased evolution of carbon dioxide. The fungal mycelia spread to the surface of the coir pith particles and degrade the lignocellulosic content. A Pilot Scale Laboratory for PITHPLUS and COIRRET was launched at Central Coir Research Institute to extend the service to coir entrepreneurs for utilization of coir pith. C-POM had increased Nitrogen, Potassium and Phosphorous (Table-1) and decreased lignin and particle size( 50-200 microns) and is more suitable as a soil additive and growing medium for agri / horticulture. The process was adopted by the coir entrepreneurs for their economic benefit.

Method of Bed Composting Method of Hillock Composting
Method of Composting of Coir Pith
The standard methods of composting of coir pith :- An area of 5 X3 Mtr. is to be selected in a sheltered place preferably under a tree that enabling to protect the heap from direct sun light and heavy rain. Spread uniformly 100 kg. of coir pith on the marked area. Spread 400 gms. of fungus, PITHPLUS on the coir pith. This layer is covered with another 100 kg. of coir pith over which 1 kg. urea is applied. This process of sandwiching the PITHPLUS and urea alternatively with 100 kg. coir pith is repeated so that the heap reaches a height of one meter. To compost one metric ton of coir pith 2 kg. PITHPLUS and 5 kg. urea are required. Water is sprinkled on the heap to maintain sufficient moisture up to 200%. The heap is allowed to decompose for 25 days
TABLE-1 COIR PITH AND PEAT MOSS
PARAMETER C-POM PEAT MOSS RAW PITH
pH 6.8 5.16 5.8
ELECTRICAL CONDUCTIVITY(Millimhos/cm) 0.19 0.027 0.8
CATION EXCHANGE CAPACITY 80 MEQ/ 100 GMS. 91.6 MEQ/ 100 GMS. 20 MEQ/ 100 GMS.
NITROGEN 1.26% 0.75% 0.26%
PHOSPHOROUS 0.06% 0.0056% 0.01%
POTASSIUM 1.20% 0.13% 0.78%
COPPER (ppm) 6.20 2.3 3.1
ORGANIC CARBON 24.4% 48.52% 29%
C.N.RATIO 19.1 65.1 112.1
LIGNIN 4.8% 38.5% 30%
TOTAL ORGANIC MATTER 95.6% 83.2% 85%
 

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