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Agriculture > Spices > Ginger

Crop Management

Harvesting and curing

The crop is ready for harvest in about 6 months after planting when the leaves turn yellow, and start drying up gradually. The clumps are lifted carefully with a spade or digging fork, and the rhizomes are separated from the dried up leaves, roots and adhering soil.

For preparing vegetable ginger, harvesting is done from sixth month onwards. The rhizomes are thoroughly washed in water and sun-dried for a day. For preparing dry ginger, the produce (harvested after 8 months) is soaked in water for 6-7 hours. The rhizomes are then rubbed well to clean the extraneous matter. After cleaning, the rhizomes are removed from water and the outer skin is removed with bamboo splinters having pointed ends. Deep scraping may be avoided to prevent damage of oil cells, which are just below the outer skin. The peeled rhizomes are washed and dried in sun uniformly for 1 week. The dry rhizomes are rubbed together to get rid of the last bit of skin or dirt. The yield of dry ginger is 19-25% of fresh ginger depending on the variety and location where the crop is grown.

Fresh ginger (with relatively low fibre) harvested at 170-180 days after planting can be used for preparing salted ginger. Tender rhizomes with a portion of the pseudo stem may be washed thoroughly and soaked in 30% salt solution containing 1 % citric acid. After 14 days it is ready for use and can be stored under refrigeration.

Storage of seed rhizomes

In order to obtain good germination, the seed rhizomes are to be stored properly in pits under shade. For seed material, bold and healthy rhizomes from disease free plants are selected immediately after harvest. For this purpose, healthy and disease free clumps are marked in the field when the crop is 6-8 months old and still green. The seed rhizomes are treated with a solution containing quinalphos 0.075% and mancozeb 0.3% for 30 minutes and dried under shade. The seed rhizomes are stored in pits of convenient size in sheds. The walls of the pits may be coated with cow dung paste. The seed rhizomes are placed in pits in layers along with well-dried sand/saw dust (put one layer of seed rhizomes, then put 2 cm thick layer of sand/saw dust). Sufficient gap is to be left at the top of the pits for adequate aeration. The pits can be covered with wooden planks with one or two small openings for aeration. The seed rhizomes in the pits may be checked once in about 21 days by removing the plank and shriveled and disease-affected rhizome are to be removed. The seed rhizomes can also be stored in pits dug in the ground under shade. Farmers also preserve seed rhizomes using leaves of Glycosmis pentaphylla (panal).


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