Introduction to Carambola Cultivation
Today, the discussion topic is Carambola Cultivation which is also populary known as Star Fruit.
This is one of the berry fruit which is popular all over the world. These are native to the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia. The Star Fruit belongs to Oxalidaceae. The Star fruit is scientifically named as Carambola. These are mostly consumed in the East Asia, Southeast Asia, South Pacific and Micronesia. These can be consumed freshly or by making them into relishes perseveres, juices and drinks. It is believed that these are originated first in Sri Lanka or Indonesia; these are one of the favorites of the local and native places. These are now cultivated for the commercial purposes in India, China, Guam, Southeast Asia.
Characteristics of Star Fruit:
Plant: The plant or tree is small – medium in height, the plants grows up to a height of 7 – 10 m. They spread up to a diameter of 6 – 7.6 cm. This is single or multi trunked tree. The tree should be protected from the heavy winds as this can cause harm to the tree.
Leaves: The leaves of this tree will be compounded leaves of 15 – 30 cm in length. They are alternately to the stems or the branches. The leaflet has 5 – 11 leaves. The leaflet will be 1.5 – 9 cm in length. And the width of the leaflet will be 1 – 4.5 cm.
Flowers: The flowers are small in size, the panicles are borne, and the diameter of the branches is also small. The flowers are prefect and also the size of the flower will be small and 1 cm in diameter. The colour of the flower will be pink – lavender in colour. The flower has 5 petals and 5 sepals.
Fruit: The fruit of this tree is named as star fruit, the fruit is fleshy, and the berry is 4 – 5 celled. The fruit is 5 – 15 cm in length and also the fruit has 5 – 8 predominantly longitudinal ribs.
Seed: The fruit contains 10 – 12 seeds in a fruit. The seeds will be 0.6 – 1.3 cm in length, they are thin and also the colour of the seed will be light brown in colour.
Read: Anjeer (Fig) Cultivation.
Properties of Carambola (Star Fruit):
Nutrients that are present in Star Fruit:
- Fat: 0.33 g
- Protein: 1.04 g
- Carbohydrates: 6.73 g
- Protein: 1.04 g
- The Minerals that are present in Star Fruit are Zinc, Calcium, Magnesium, Manganese, Iron, Phosphorus, Potassium, and Sodium
- Vitamins: Vitamin (C, E)
Varieties Of Carambola (Star Fruit):
- B 6
- B 10
- Giant Siam
- Thai Might
Soil and Climate requirements for Carambola Cultivation:
There is no specific soil, which is preferred for Carambola Cultivation. The soil, which is chosen for Carambola Cultivation should contain a good amount of organic matter, the soil which is chosen for Carambola Cultivation should not be a moist soil. The pH level should be neutral; it should be neither too acidic nor too basic. The pH level, which required for Carambola Cultivation is 5.5. – 6.5. The soil should not be too light or too deep. The soil should be capable of well draining; the soil should be well aerated. This will help the farmer in producing good quality of fruits and also to proper good nutrition to the plants.
The climate which is suitable for Carambola Cultivation is subtropical and tropical climate. It also requires sunny and pleasant climate. The areas which are humid in climate are more preferred for Carambola Cultivation. The moderate temperature is the ideal temperature, which is good for Carambola Cultivation. Lower temperatures will also harm the plants. For good growth the plants require sunlight. The crop should be protected from the heavy winds.
Land preparation and Planting for Carambola Cultivation:
All the unwanted weeds, pebbles, stones, and also the unwanted materials of the previous should be removed. Then the land should be ploughed for 2 – 3 times as it will attain the fine tilth and smooth texture following by the ploughing, the harrowing and levelling should be done. For a land we should use 5 kg each pit should be filled with a mixture of soil and also manure.
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The pits should be dug in the main field. Properly the field should be prepared, the pits which are dug should be filled with the topsoil and also with the mixture of the soil and the farmyard manure. After the plantation, we should cover the pits properly.
Propagation method for Carambola Cultivation:
The propagation of the Star Fruit can be done by using cutting and air layering’s. These can also be grown successfully by using the seeds. But while selecting the seeds, we should select them carefully. The seeds which are health should be used in sowing them the seeds should be diseases free.
Read: Growing Guava Fruit.
Manure and Fertilization method in Carambola Cultivation:
At the time of land preparation, we need to apply the farmyard manure. Before applying the fertilizers we need to test the soil so that we will know the requirement of the soil. The required micro nutrients and also the macro nutrients should be given to the land. And also organic manure and bio-fertilizers should be given to the land. We should not apply too much amount of fertilizers can harm the land.
Irrigation methods used in Carambola Cultivation:
After the planting, the first irrigation should be given. After the application of fertilizers, we need to irrigate the land. Frequent irrigation is not required during the rainy season. The drainage should be good, as this will ignore the excessive rainfall water logging. The water logging should be avoided as this can harm the plant development and also the root development. Mostly, the Star Fruit is grown in summer season. During the summer season, proper irrigation should be given. At the time of flowering and fruits, the irrigation should be avoided. For saving the water we can use the drip and sprinkler irrigation.
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Intercultural methods of Carambola Cultivation:
Weeding: The weeding should be done regularly, as this should be done for every 3 – 4 weeks. The 1 cm radius around the plants should be weed free. The weeding should be done regularly by manually or by using chemicals like herbicides or weedicides. The light herbicides are more preferred as they don’t harm the crops.
Pruning: The plants or trees should be trimmed by cutting away dead or overgrown branches or stems, especially to encourage growth.
Mulching: The weeds and also the pruned material can be used for mulching the soil. The mulching will help the soil to conserve the moisture in it.
Training: The tree, shrub, or bush should be trained for climbing the wall or fencing.
Fruit Thinning: The fruit thinning will help the crop, in giving us better quality of the fruit.
Pest and Diseases control measures in Carambola Cultivation:
The pests and diseases that attack the Star Fruit
- Algal diseases: The proper irrigation and pruning should be done to control this algal disease.
- Flyspeck: The crop should be grown in proper conditions this will reduce the occurrence of Flyspeck.
- Alternaria Black Spot: By harvesting the fruits in a proper, timely these can be controlled and also can reduce the occurrence of the Alternaria black spot.
- Pythium root rot: These will not occur when we use diseases free stock and also the seed.
- Cercospora leaf spot: By applying appropriate fungicides we can control these fruits.
- Anthracnose: These can be controlled by harvesting the fruits timely.
Harvesting techniques in Carambola Cultivation:
After harvesting, the fruit can ripen. So we need to leave the fruits on the tree until they ripen. Then we should harvest the ripen fruits by picking them from the tree. We should pick only the ripen fruits. When they ripen the color of the fruit will change. While picking we should not injure the fruit.
Post harvesting techniques in Carambola Cultivation:
Cleaning: Once, after they are harvested, they should be washed and cleaned carefully.
Sorting: The fruits should be sorted as per the shape and size.
Grading: The fruits should be graded as per the quality and colour.
Storage: these fruits can be stored in room temperature until they smell, then after the fruit can be stored in refrigerator for 1 week.
Packing: These can be packed in carton boxes.
Marketing: The fruit has high demand in local and as well as in international markets.
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Yield of Carambola:
The yield of the Star Fruit completely depends upon the management practices. The average yield of the Star Fruit is 80 – 90 kg from a year we can obtain.