Amla or Indian gooseberry is indigenous to Indian sub-continent. India ranks first in the world in area and production of this crop. Apart from India naturally growing trees are found in different parts of the world
Amla is an important crop in Ayurveda; the fruit is a good source of vitamin C. The fruit is having medicinal value. It has acrid, cooling, diuretic and laxative properties. Dried fruits are useful in hemorrhages, diarrhea, dysentery, anaemia, jaundice, dyspepsia and cough. Aonla is used in the indigenous medicines (Ayurvedic system) viz. trifla and chavanprash. Fruits are commonly used for preserve (murabbas), pickles, candy, jelly and jam. Besides fruits, leaves, bark and even seeds are being used for various purposes.
Some of the products are made using Amla are Chyawanprash, Triphala churna (mixture of Amla, Terminalia chebula and T. bellerica), Brahma Rasayana, Madumegha churna.
- Anti scorbutic, diuretic, laxative, antibiotic and anti-dysenteric.
- Phyllemblin, obtained from fruit pulp has been found to have mild depressant action on central nervous system.
- Good liver tonic
- Good demand from the industries for the preparation of various health care products also like hair oil, dye, shampoo, face creams and tooth powder.
Light and medium heavy soils are best preferable for Amla cultivation; one should avoid purely sandy soil. This tree is well adapted to dry regions and can also be grown in moderate alkaline soils also.
It is a tropical plant which requires annual rainfall of 630-800 mm is ideal for its growth.
The young plant up to the age of 3 years should be protected from hot wind during May-June and from frost during winter months. The mature plants can tolerate freezing temperature as well as a high temperature up to 46OC.
There are some verieties which can give better production as compare to desi plants, such as,
- NA-4 (Krishna)
- NA-5 (Kanchan)
- NA-7 (Promising variety)
- BSR-1 (Bhavanisagar).
- Dig pits of 1x1x1 during May-June at a distance of 4.5 m x 4.5 m (Approximate- 15 Feet)
- Total number of trees with this spacing is 200 in one acre.
- Leave for 15-20 days exposing to sunlight.
- Each pit should be filled with surface soil mixed with 10 kg vermicompost, 3.5 Kg Neem Cake, 1 Kg Trichoderma and 0.5 kg of Gypsum before planting the grafted seedlings.
Important Note: Plant at least 3 varieties in a ratio of 2:2:1 for the purpose of pollination and maximum yield. For e.g. in an acre, plant 80 grafts of NA-7, 80 grafts of Krishna and 40 grafts of Kanchan for best results.
Young plants require watering during summer months at 10 days interval till they are fully established. Watering of bearing plants is advised during summer months at biweekly interval. After the monsoon rains, during October – December about 25-30 litres of water per day per tree through drip irrigation should be given.
TRAINING AND PRUNING
Leaving only 4-5 well shaped branches with wide angle at about 0.75 m from the ground level, other dead, diseased, week crisscrossing branches and suckers should be pruned off at the end of December.
MULCHING AND INTERCROPPING
During summer, the crop should be mulched with paddy straw or wheat straw or dry leaves of any tree can be placed at the base of the tree up to 15-20 cm from the trunk. Small size and height crops like green gram, black gram, cow pea and horse gram or any other medicinal, aromatic or floriculture crops can be grown.
HARVESTING AND YIELD
- Amla tree starts bearing from 3rd years of planting.
- The fruits are harvested during February when they become dull greenish yellow from light green.
- The mature fruits are hard and they do not fall at gentle touch and therefore vigorous shaking is requsired.
- Fruits can also be harvested using long bamboo poles attached with hooks.
- A mature tree of about 10 years will yield 50-70 kg of fruit.
- The average weight of the fruit is 60-70 g and 1 kg contains about 15-20 fruits.
- A well maintained tree yields up to an age of 70 years
|Year of Planting||Yield/ Plant||Total Plants/ Acre||Rate/ Kg||Total Income|
|First Year||Nil||200||Rs. 15/Kg||Rs. 00/-|
|Second Year||Nil||200||Rs. 15/Kg||Rs. 00/-|
|Third Year||15 Kg||200||Rs. 15/Kg||Rs. 45,000/-|
|Fourth Year||30 Kg||200||Rs. 15/Kg||Rs. 90,000/-|
|Fifth Year||40 Kg||200||Rs. 15/Kg||Rs. 1,20,000/-|
|Sixth Year||60 Kg||200||Rs. 15/Kg||Rs. 1,80,000/-|
|Seventh Year||80 Kg||200||Rs. 15/Kg||Rs. 2,40,000/-|
|From 8th to 40 Year||Every year average 100 Kg||200||Rs. 15/Kg||Rs. 3,00,000/- Every Year|