Palmarosa (Cymbopogon martinii var. motia (Roxv) Wats.)
Family : Graminae
Motia, Sofia, Tripta, Trishna, PRC-1, IW 31245, IW 3629, IW 3244, OPD-1, OPD-2, RRL (B)-77, Motia, Sofia and Tripta are the popular varieties under cultivation.
Soil and climate
A well drained loamy soil rich in organic matter is suitable. It comes up well under tropical conditions with an annual rainfall of about 150 cm and tolerates upto a pH of 9.5.
Seeds and planting
The optimum seed rate is 2.5 kg of seeds/ha. The seeds are sown in raised nursery beds in lines at 15 – 20 cm apart. Transplant the seedlings after 3 – 4 weeks in ridges at a spacing of 60 x 60 cm during June – July.
Establishment will be poor as compared to seedlings. About 28,000 slips/ha will be required to plant at 60 x 60 cm spacing.
FYM 10 t/ha and NPK at 20:50:40 kg/ha are required as basal dose. Top dressing is done with N 15 kg/ha is applied in 3 splits at 3, 6 and 9 months after planting. Application of ZnSo4 25kg/ha will increase the yield.
Give 1 – 2 weedings in the early stages and earth up after each harvest and top dressing.
The first harvest commences at 3 – 4 months of planting. Subsequent harvests are done at 3 – 4 months interval upto 5 years after which replanting has to be carried out. Cut the bush by leaving 10-15cm from the ground level. Shade dry the leaves for 2 to 3 days and then subject to steam distillation for oil extraction.
Herbage – 20 – 30 t/ha/year
First year – 20 kg/ha
Second year – 60 kg/ha
Third and Fourth year – 70 kg/ha