By Roland Bourdeix, Malua Solinuu. Valerie Saena Tuia and Alofa Leuluaialii

This website returns the information collected during four scientific visits conducted in 2001, 2010, 2012 and 2017 on behalf the Ministry of Agriculture of Samoa, the International Coconut Genetic Resources Network, the Secretatiat of the South Pacific Community, the Global Crop Diversity Trust, Bioversity International and the French Centre for Agricultural Research and Development, Coconut Industry Development for the Pacific (CIDP project) and the Darwin Initiative "Saving Pacific Coconuts".



General overview

Samoa, officially the Independent State of Samoa, formerly known as Western Samoa, is a sovereign state in Polynesia, encompassing the western part of the Samoan Islands in the South Pacific Ocean. The entire island group, inclusive of American Samoa, was known as the Navigators Islands before the 20th century because of the Samoans’ seafaring skills.

Coconut is the most predominant crop grown in Samoa. Its traditional value and multipurpose uses make it one of the most important crops in the everyday lives of Samoans as an important source of food and cash.

The new CIDP expertise on Coconut planting material in the Pacific region

Landscaping two small Islands of Samoa using the Polymotu concept
Proposal for coconut conservation in the small islands of Samoa

Public lectures and communication
Farmers and coconut associations in Samoa
About the first Coconut varietal contest organized in Samoa (1984)

List of coconut varieties recorded in Samoa in 2001
First visit in 2001: picturing Samoan coconut varieties

Ideas for replanting the Olomanu Seed garden
Site and design proposal for the new Samoan Coconut genebank
Copra making near Olomanu seed garden in 2001


Nuu Research Station, in Samoa
The small coconut collection of Nuu research Station
MAF coconut nurseries in Samoa
Planting material released by MAF in Samoa

Varieties and palms identified in 2017 in the framework of the Darwin project

Collecting the Niu Afa variety in gardens and farmer's fields
Collecting the Niu Afa coconut in Olomanu seed garden
The Niu afa coconut variety
Development of new handicraft using the Niu afa coconut
Earliest references on the niu kafa or niu afa variety.

Old lists of coconut varieties in Samoa by Christophersen (1935and Parham, 1972.
The Westec plantation and large previous replanting projects
Early Samoa, Niu afa and the naming of Niue Island
Old documents and books to be further studied
Words related to coconut in Samoan language


Smallest Islands of Samoa
Landscapes of Upolu Island (South part)
Landscape of Upolu Island (North part)
Coconut palms varieties in Apia (in preparation)
Landscape of Savai (2001)
A survey of Apolima Island



Collecting coconut varieties for conservation
when Olomanu was the Samoan national coconut genebank



Technical information

For replanting material and techniques, please visit our website "Planting material for the Pacific region"

How to prepare leaflet samples for molecular analysis of coconut varieties.

Site and design proposal for the new Samoan Coconut genebank


Please visit also

General principles for setting up a new coconut genebank
A "golden rule" for coconut genebanks

General localisation in Upolu

Two boundaries of the future genebank


Planting material released by MAF in Samoa

Fews years ago, in the  2000's, a total of six coconut varieties, including three hybrids and three tall varieties were released to farmers. A small brochure was distributed to farmers, that contains the following data:

Name
Code
Number of nuts per palm per hectare
Coconut meat per nut (g)
Number of nuts per hectare (at 158,08 palms.ha)
Coconut meat per ha per year (kg)
Percentage of oil (on coprah or Dry matter?)
Malayan Red Dwarf x Niu Vai Tall
MRDxNVIT
136
564
21 499
12 125
na
Malayan Red Dwarf x Rennell Island Tall
MRDxRIT
129
517
20 392
10 543
69
Rennell Island Tall (From Solomon)
RIT
72
682
11 382
7 762
65
Malayan Red Dwarf x Samoan Tall
MRDxSMOT
114
383
18 021
6 902
69
Niu Vai Tall
NVIT
32
904
5 059
4 573
70
Samoan Tall
SMOT
38
401
6 007
2 409
69

In 2017, MAF is officially releasing only the Samon Tall variety, but some hybrids and Dwarfs (niu le'a) are also sold in small quantitites by Nuu research station.

  

Words related to coconut in Samoan language

From:

Pratt, G. (1893). A Grammar and Dictionary of the Samoan Language, with English and Samoan vocabulary. London Missionary Society.
Krämer, A. (1994). The Samoa Islands: Material Culture (Vol. 2). University of Hawaii Press




The small coconut collection of Nuu research Station

Here is the map of the small coconut collection held in Nuu Research Station as of November 2017.






01
02
03
04
05
06
07
08
09
10
11
12
13
Niu Samatau
01
o
o
X
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
X
o
o
Niu Samoa
02
o
o
A
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
o

Niu vai
03
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
X
o
o
o
o

Niu Somolon
04
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
o

Niu togau
05
o
o
o
o
X
X
o
o
X
o
X
o

Niu afa
06
o
o
o
o
o
o
o
X
o
o
o
o

Hybrid
07
o
X
X
o
o
X
o
o
o
o
o
o

Niu Ati
08
o
X
o
X
o
o
o
o
X
X
o
o

Niu le'a 1
09
A
A
A
o
o
?
?
X
X
o
o
o

Niu le'a 2
10
A
o
o
o
o
o
o
X
o
X
o
X

Niu tea
11
o
o
A
o
o
X
o
o
o
X
X
o


Caption

o
Living true to type palm
A
Abnormal palm
X
Dead palm
?
Dubious palms (offtype?)

Correspondance between local names and international names

Local name
International name
International abbreviation
Niu Samatau
Samoan Tall Samatau
SMOT03
Niu Samoa
Samoan tall
SMOT
Niu vai
Niu Vai Tall
NVIT
Niu Somolon
Rennell Island Tall
RIT
Niu togau
??? May be Tonga Tall or edible husk
TONT (???)
Niu afa
Niu Kafa Tall
NKFT
Hybrid
Malayan Red Dwarf x Rennell Island Tall
MRDxRIT
Niu Ati
Nu Ati Red Dwarf
NATD
Niu le'a 1
Niu leka Samoa small nuts?
NLAD01
Niu le'a 2
Niu leka Samoa big nuts?
NLAD02
Niu tea
Tahitian Red Dwarf
TRD


In Samoa, there are two recorded Niu le’a populations, one with big fruits, the other with small fruits. I will be good to precise which kind on Niu le’a are conserved in Nuu.  Some of the niu le'a seems to be off-type with a growth typical to Tall-type varieties. Expert advised to replace the abnormal, off-type and dead palms.