Citronella cultivation

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Citronella cultivation

INTRODUCTION

Java Citronella (Cymbopogon winterianus) is an important aromatic cum medicinal grass belonging to the Poaceae family with proven therapeutic and medicinal values. Different components of its oil are extensively used as a source of cosmetic,flavoring, shop and perfumery industry all over the world. Citronella oil is popularly known for its characteristic insect repellent feature especially against

Climate and soil

For the cultivation of Citronella, well drained, deep and fertile soil is suitable. Cymbopogon winterianus (Jal Pallavi) can be cultivated on almost every type of the soil. But soil of specific and experimental field of Kannauj was loamy sand, with pH 6.5

Seed Sowing

Planting of slips were done in 100 square meter area of the field. Slips were planted on the distance of 75×60 cm for the proper irrigation. Planting can also be done in the month of Jan to March and June-July. The growth percentage of crop is increase and the plants do not face weed
competition because of the control soil moisture

Manure and fertilizer

Plants were fertilized with nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (NPK) at a ratio of annually. 180 kg N, 80 kg P2O5 and 50 kg K2O per hectare were used for proper plant fertilization. Before plantation, 5 tanks cow dung compost per hectare was applied into the soil.

Weed Control

Citronella plants are susceptible for weed competition for earlier months after plantation. This problem is increase in rainy season. The plants should be kept weed free for 60-75 days for batter growth. Weeds were removed by manual removal herbicides and regional hand work process.

Irrigation

Citronella crop requires regular irrigation during rain free period therefore; plants were irrigated 9 times according to local and regional common practices.

Harvesting

Harvesting was done after 120 days of plantation. The cultivation methods and the
measures were taken during cultivation of Citronella Java give good yield of herbage
and better oil recovery from the leaves. Citronella essential oil was isolated from
Citronella herbage through steam distillation. In this distillation technique, 1.78 kg of
lemongrass oil is being isolated from 225 kg of the Citronella. It means the oil content
in Citronella herbage in the Kannauj region was 0.79%.


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