#2 Golden Treasure of Ayurveda : Organic Cultivation of Turmeric
Cultivation of turmeric is economically profitable because of its varied uses & easy cultivation features as already described in Golden Treasure of Ayurveda : “Turmeric” .
Turmeric cultivation favours by alluvial soil & temperate climate, both features are predominantly available in India.
Following are the basic steps for organic cultivation of Turmeric (Organic Farming)
- Grows well in loamy or alluvial soil with good drainage system
- Loose and friable soil helps
- Gravy, clayey and stony , acidic, alkaline, soils are not suitable
- pH- 5.5.-6.5
- Water logging conditions harm the plant
- Hot climate with proper moisture conditions for good growth of rhizome
- 1000-1200 m altitude preferable
- Partial to full sun light is beneficial
- Temperature upto 40 degree
- Deep tilth and heavy manuring
- Ploughing 2-3 times upto the depth of 30 cm
- After ploughing 12-15 tonne/acre of cattle manure should be mixed well in the field
- Seedbeds of 20 m length and 3 m wide are made in the field and distance b/w teo seedbeds should be kept about 20 cm for proper growth
Propagation of Turmeric
- Done through fingers of corm.
- Appropriate period for plantation- April end (India)
- Small pieces of finger corm having one or two buds are planted at a depth of 5-6 cm in the soil.
- Weight of each finger- 40g
- Plant to plant distance- 20 cm and b/w rows- 30 cm
- Irrigation should be done immediately for proper settling of fingers
- Phosphorus and potas affect the yield and growth of plants. So, 10 kg/acre of each should be well mixed in the field at the time of planting and after that 2 quintal/acre of vermicompost should be spread when the field has been irrigated immediately after plantation.
- Field should be kept well moist for settlement of fingers.
- April- June- frequent irrigation needed
- First- after one month of plantation
- Periodical as per the requirement
- To protect infestation with fungus, the finger corms should be kept dipped in a solution of 200 litre water and 10 litre cow urine for 20 minutes before plantation.
Disease: Leaf Spot
- Caused by Cercospora curcuma, 40 kg of neem cake per acre can be applied as a based dose to cure the disease.
- After 9-10 months after lower leaves turn pale yellow.
- Leaves- collected for commercial oil
- Rhizomes- through hand picks
Harvesting of Turmeric
- Small finger like rhizome pieces should be separated and kept aside as stock for raising the next crop.
- Kept in heaps in shady areas, properly covered with C.longa leaves and some soil, air passage holes should be made in these heaps
- Cleaned and dried in shade for 1 week until hardening takes place.
- Hard rhizome pieces are biled for 1-2hrs in 100L of water containing 100g of sodium bicarbonate. 50 g of sodium bisulphate and hydrochloric acid is also added. When rhizomes get softened, boiling should be stopped and these are dried in the field for 10-15 days.
- Polishing- After drying, it is polished. 2kg of lime, 30 g sodium bisulphate, 30 ml HCl, 50 g alum and 150 ml castor oil are added to 100 g of C. longa.