Betel leaf farming
In this article we are going to talk about Betel leaf farming process , best variety to cultivate, agro-climatic conditions and many more.
What is betel leaf ?
Betel leaf generally know as “Paan” in India. The betel leaf is green in color and have heart shaped. It is used in India in very large quantity. Betel leaf belongs to Piperaceae family. More than 90 species of betel leaves are found all over the world. 45 species are found all over India and 30 of them are found in West Bengal. Betel leaf is grown as cash crop in India.
Best variety to cultivate in India ?
There are lots of variety found in India of betel leaf. There are some best variety for cultivation.
1. Kapoori , Deswari , Bangla , Magahi – for Uttar Pradesh
2. Calcutta , Desi Paan , Panton – for Bihar
3. Sanchi , Kali Bangla , Mitha , Bangla , Simurali Bangla – for West Bengal
Betel leaf grow very well in high rainfall area with tropical climate and shady places. Direct sunlight may effect the growth of leaves. Betel leaf best grow in moist and humid condition but doesn’t need direct sunlight. It grow very well in shady places. Betel leaf prefers shady places, compared to direct sunlight.
The best season for planting betel leaf is October for open planting system and Monsoon is best season for close planting system .
Betel leaf can grow best in sandy loam and heavy loam. Soil should have good drainage system. For best results and higher yield, mix organic compost in the soil. Give water time to time in other season but in monsoon, rain water is enough for the plants and make sure a proper drainage system in monsoon. Betel leaves need water but they cannot tolerate waterlogging. So just keep the soil moist.
Soil sterilization for planting –
In the month of March to May cover the field with polythene sheets to avoid the soil born diseases. Apply neem cake 0.5 tons per hectare and carbofuran 0.7 kg per hectare. Take a gap of 60 to 75 days before harvesting betel leaf and application of carbofuran. Never apply carbofuran on established Betel leaf plant.
How to propagate Betel leaf by cutting ?
42,000 to 75,000 cuttings are planted in one hectare in open planting system. 10,0000 to 1,25,000 cuttings are good for closed rectangular planting system.
Harvesting time ?
March to April in – Uttar Pradesh , Bihar and Madhya Pradesh
January to February OR April to May in – Tamilnadu
May to June in – Andhra Pradesh and Telangana
An average annual yield of a good Betel plant is about 60 to 70 leaves per plant and 6 to 7 billion leaves per hectare.