Methods of propagation, soil preparation, planting, harvesting and more

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Cinnamon is a spice obtained from the inner bark of several species of trees of the genus Cinnamomum.





Cinnamon is a spice obtained from the inner bark of several species of trees of the genus Cinnamomum. In a wide range of cuisines, including sweet and savory meals like cereals, snacks, teas, and traditional foods, cinnamon is primarily used as an aromatic and flavoring condiment. Cinnamon’s aroma and flavor come from its essential oil and main component, cinnamaldehyde, as well as several other ingredients, such as eugenol.












Varieties

Two high yielding premium cinnamon varieties released by IISR can be grown in different parts of India. When a seedling or cutting is planted on a mound, Navashree and Nithyashree varieties have an initial yield potential of 56 and 54 kg dry prickles/hectare per year respectively. Navashree produces 2.8% leaf oil, 6.2% leaf eugenol, 0.7% bark oleoresin, 2.7% bark oil and 73% cinnamaldehyde in l bark and varieties Nithyashree also produces 58 percent cinnamaldehyde in the bark, 10 percent bark oleoresin, 3 percent leaf oil, and 78 percent leaf eugenol. Some other cinnamon varieties include Sugandhin YCD 1, PPI – 1, Konkan Tej, etc.

Soil and climate requirements

A hardy plant, cinnamon can withstand a variety of soil types and weather conditions. The tree grows in laterite and sandy regions with poor nutrient status along the west coast of India. It climbs well from sea level to an altitude of about 1000m, it climbs well. Since it is mainly grown as a rainfed crop, the optimum annual rainfall is between 200 and 250 cm.

Multiplication technique

Chopped off

Semi-hardwood cuttings about 10 cm long with two leaves are taken and dipped in IBA 2000 ppm or a rooting hormone (Keradix-B), then planted in sand beds that have been raised in an area in the shade or in polythene bags filled with sand or a mixture of sand and coconut dust (1:1).












Sowing

Cinnamon can also be propagated by seed. These plants flower in January on the West Coast and the fruits ripen from June to August. The fruits are either harvested directly from the tree or harvested from the ground. Since the seeds have limited viability, they are quickly separated from the fruits, cleaned of the pulp and sown. Seeds are planted in polythene bags or sand beds which have been mixed with well-rotted animal dung, soil and other ingredients (3:3:1). Within 15-20 days, the seeds begin to germinate.

Land preparation and planting

Pits of 50 cm x 50 cm x 50 cm are dug at a spacing of 3 m x 3 m in the designated area for cinnamon cultivation. Before planting, they are filled with topsoil and compost. To take advantage of the monsoon for planting seedlings, the cinnamon tree is planted between June and July. Seedlings 10-12 months old, cuttings with strong roots or air layers are used for transplantation. Each pit can hold 3-4 seedlings, rooted cuttings or layers. In some cases, the seeds are simply dipped in compost and the trenches filled with soil. For healthy and rapid plant growth, providing moderate shade in the early years is beneficial.












Fertilizer requirement

It is advisable to weed twice a year, in June-July and October-November, and to dig the ground around the bushes once, in August-September. In the first year, it is advisable to apply 20 g N, 18 g P2O5 and 25 g K2O per seed. For plants older than 10 years, the fertilizer dose is gradually increased to 200 g N, 180 g P2O5 and 200 g K2O. In May-June and September-October, fertilizers should be applied in two equally divided applications. It is also advisable to apply FYM (25 kg) between May and June, as well as 25 kg of green leaf mulch throughout the summer.

Harvest and yield

Harvesting starts from the 4th or 5th year after planting. Once in May and again in November, the shoots are cut in order to remove the bark.












Cutting the shoots for peeling the bark begins as soon as the rain stops. Young shoots come out of the stump after cutting and will be ready to be picked up next season in about 18 months. The bark is removed from the chosen shoots, which are usually one meter long and one to two centimeters thick.

The yield of 3 to 4 year old plants includes 62 to 125 kg quills/ha and 10 to 11 year old plants have an average yield of 225 to 300 kg quills/ha











First published: June 27, 2022, 06:39 IST


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