Sometimes we get to add extravagant crops or we grow very little, at least in Spain and this is a specific case of it. Few people will be used to seeing how turmeric can be grown , but there is our example.
We are going to try to tell you some important things about this herbaceous plant of the Zingiberaceae family and all the properties that its rhizome harbors.
CHARACTERISTICS OF THE TURMERIC PLANT
What can we say about the Zingiberaceae family? Although it has a strange name, it has under its belt about 1,000 species divided into 50 genera. The plants that most represent this family is turmeric ( curcuma longa L.), which we are going to talk about today and also cardamom .
This plant, which is part of one of the ingredients of curry , is widely cultivated in India and especially in areas of Southeast Asia. Now we will see what are the conditions of its cultivation that causes it to be cultivated there mainly.
TURMERIC GROW GUIDE
The trick to growing turmeric is heat and humidity . Many countries in the area of Southeast Asia, as we have mentioned before, have this climate, such as the area of India, Micronesia or Polynesia. It needs an average temperature higher than 20 ºC and a maximum of 30 ºC.
Therefore, not all countries can afford this climate and, therefore, the cultivation of C urcuma longa L.
Regarding humidity, it is also important to generate a constantly humid environment, or what is the same, a frequent rainfall practically every month. In fact, as we will see in irrigation, it is soil moisture is a special condition.
A good soil prepared to grow this plant must have a primarily loamy structure . Then it can vary to sandy loam or clay loam but basically loamy.
Clays do well because they retain water better and increase the availability of moisture in the roots , but you can never reach levels of waterlogging ( root suffocation ).
Regarding the pH, a soil that supports a lot of rainfall becomes an acid soil and therefore, it is easy to think that turmeric needs an acid pH . It can be around 6, although a little less also accepts it without problems.
It also needs to be grown in open fields where it has access to great lighting . In fact, it is a factor that conditions the thickening of its roots, and therefore, the increase in the production of this dye.
Irrigation and subscriber
The moisture and irrigation is one of the most crucial factors in the cultivation of turmeric. With the drought and the reduction of irrigation, the plant stops its growth and produces rhizomes (from which the product is extracted), small and not very productive.
In summary, it is a very demanding plant in terms of watering and humidity , and it is very important to be generous with water, especially at the beginning of the crop.
Generally, in plants where the roots of the plant are used, they need them to grow large and vigorous. Therefore, we will need a soil rich in organic matter and mineral content. A background fertilizer can be made before cultivation and a maintenance fertilizer. A fertile soil is very important for Curcuma longa L.
The multiplication is carried out from the root buds themselves . Those buds separate and give rise to a new plant. To achieve these culinaryly appreciated rhizomes we must wait between 7 and 10 months after planting, and it is usually done in autumn.
SOME PROPERTIES OF TURMERIC
We can derive the use that is made of turmeric in 2 different types:
As we have said before, it is a basic ingredient of curry . It is also used as a food coloring to replace saffron , especially for price issues.
The potential medicinal properties of turmeric are increasingly being investigated . The Chinese already used it in ancient times to solve liver remedies and as a cosmetic product.
The National Institute of Health in the United States is currently conducting a lot of clinical trials using turmeric as a raw material looking for some anti-cancer , anti-diabetic or anti- arthritis properties , but more conclusive results are still needed in this regard.