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Variation in some anatomical and physical properties of stems of five rattan palm species of Ghana

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Selected anatomical and physical properties of stems of Calamus deeratus, Eremospatha dransfieldii, Eremospatha macrocarpa, Laccosperma acutiflorum and Laccosperma secundiflorum in the natural forest of Ghana were investigated to aid in understanding their quality and to promote their efficient utilization. Fibre lumen diameter, double fibre wall thickness (fibre diameter minus fibre lumen diameter) and proportion of fibres exhibited a more definite pattern of variations within and between all the five species than other anatomical properties. Generally, proportion of fibre and double fibre wall thickness decreased, whereas fibre lumen diameter increased from base to top internodes. Initial moisture content increased consistently from base to top internodes whilst relative density decreased in the same direction. Simple regression analysis of physical properties on anatomical properties revealed that fibre lumen diameter, double fibre wall thickness and proportion of fibre are important parameters likely to influence initial moisture content and relative density along the stems and between all species investigated. Stem quality of all five species is also discussed.


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