- Stevia Cultivation:
Introduction to Stevia Cultivation:
Stevia is a perennial growing organic, zero-caloric, sweet tasting plant sugar alternative across the world. This miracle herb also being employed for lowering blood pressure. Stevia plant is native to Brazil and Paraguay and being developed on commercial scale especially in the Asian region. This plant can attain a height of 3 ft (91 cm) with slender, branched stems, and develops well throughout the temperate, and a few sections of tropical regions of the world. Stevia leaf extract is being used in several sugar alternative procedures. Stevia is a natural sweetener to diabetics and other people on carbohydrate-controlled diets. Commercial cultivation of Stevia herb is extremely growing day by day since it has demand in the local and export markets due to its medicinal values. Stevia is grown on commercial scale in China, Thailand, Paraguay, Japan, and Brazil. China tops the production Stevia in the world. You have to comprehend the simple fact that standing of Stevia extracts as food additives and nutritional supplements varies from country to country. Stevia Cultivation is profitable under ideal conditions of plant science. In the following article, let’s speak more about “how to grow Stevia plants”.
Scientific Name / Botanical Name of Stevia:
Family Title of Stevia Plant:
Genus of Stevia Plant:
World Important Production Countries of Stevia:
- United States of America
- Argentina and Colombia.
Health Benefits of Stevia:
The following are a Few of the health benefits of Stevia leaves.
- Stevia aids in the management of diabetes.
- Stevia is also aids in weight loss management.
- Stevia helps to stop certain kind of cancers.
- Stevia prevents gingivitis and cavities therefore great for health.
- Stevia is excellent for skin health as it may treat psoriasis and dermatitis.
- Stevia also promotes bone health by reducing the risk of osteoporosis.
- Stevia assists in alleviating blood pressure.
Varieties of Stevia:
Each region has a different variety of Stevia cultivar and you ought to find out appropriate cultivar such as region. The following are a few of the varieties developed in India.
- SRB — 123.
- SRB — 512.
- SRB — 128.
Climate Requirement for Stevia Cultivation:
If it comes to climate, Stevia harvest requires an average rainfall of 140 to 150 cm/year for plant growth. An average temperature of 30°C to 32°C is ideal for its development. Nevertheless, be certain that the day temperatures aren’t exceeding over 47°C and night temperatures aren’t falling under 5°C.
Soil Requirement for Stevia Cultivation:
Even though it could be cultivated on a wide array of soils, sandy loam, and red soils are best suited to Stevia Cultivation harvest. On the other hand, the soil pH of 6.5 to 7.5 will be ideal for its best growth and yield. It requires continuous moisture of soil and it doesn’t grow in clayey and block cotton soils.
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Property Preparation in Stevia Cultivation:
Appropriate land preparation is extremely important in Stevia Cultivation plant life. The land ought to be ploughed with a disc plough or harrowed to divide the clods in the field. Be sure that the soil is brought down to fine tilth stage. Carry out 1 to 2 ploughing after harrowing is advised. This property preparation should clear any weeds and stones in the field.
Propagation and Planting in Stevia Cultivation:
Stevia could be dispersed through seed or stem cutting and planted on beds up to 45,000 to 50,000 plants per 1 acre of field. Stem cuttings of 15 to 16 cm length ought to be taken from year leaf exile for results. The best weeks for the propagation of Stevia is contingent on the region. These cuttings will be prepared for transplanting after 1 couple rooting. The best and economical way to increase Stevia harvest is forming raised beds. This requires raised beds height of 1/2 feet width and 1/2 feet height. The row-to-row distance is 1 ft plus plant-to-plant is 1/2 ft. This dimension will accommodate approximately 50,000 plants/acre.
Note: Stevia harvest can be grown under irrigated condition by both direct sown and transplanted methods.
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Irrigation in Stevia Cultivation:
Stevia harvest requires consistent soil moisture to encourage maximum shoot development. Commercial farmers may embrace a drip, furrow or sprinkler applications. Drip and furrow irrigation techniques are favored for high foliage quality and also to reduce the incidence of any germs. Avoid any water stress and watering regularity in Stevia Cultivation is determined by soil moisture holding capacity and climatic condition. Water-logging conditions in the field ought to be avoided by providing water drains.
Manures and Fertilizers in Stevia Cultivation:
Stevia harvest responds very well to fertilizers. 30:110:110 kg/ha of N:P:K is suggested for higher yields. It’s possible to supplement the farmyard manure of 10 to 15 tonnes/ha during the land preparation.
Intercultural Operations in Stevia Cultivation:
Timely and appropriate intercultural operation is required in Stevia harvest growing.
- Weed Control: Pot free harvest is obviously desirable and elimination of weeds needs to be carried out independently. Intercultural operations in Stevia plants is simple since the crop is grown in raised beds. It is not suggested to spray some chemicals for controlling the weeds since these are medicinal plants.
- Avoid Flowering: Flowering of those Stevia plants must be avoided as it has a tendency to grow tall. Pinching of the apical bud is suggested to enhance the development of the Stevia plant with side branches.
Pests and Diseases in Stevia Cultivation Crop:
No serious pests and diseases found in Stevia crop cultivation. However, In the event, if you notice any diseases, spray neem oil diluted in water. This way is best for medicinal plants to grow organically. In the event of origin grubs, use castor oil mixed with cow manure and ought to be sprayed little near the Stevia plants. The pathogens Powdery mildew, septoria leaf spot, Alterneria foliage area, and damping-off diseases, have been reported in a few of the countries. For symptoms and control measures, see the technical officer in the neighborhood horticulture department. Note: The regional horticulture division is a great source of finding information about pests and diseases in Stevia Cultivation. Do not experiment on your own without knowing the symptoms and causes of the said pests and diseases.
Harvesting in Stevia Cultivation:
Stevia crop can be harvested when crops attain the height of 50 cm to 60 cm. Optimum yield and quality of produce are best just prior to flowering. Harvesting of this plant leaves ought to be done by plucking. The entire plant with all the side branches must be trimmed leaving 12 to 15 cm in the bottom.
Post-Harvesting in Stevia Cultivation:
Depending on climatic conditions and density of loading, it takes 1 to 2 days to wash Stevia plants at 45°C to 50°C. Immediately after drying, Thresher/Separator needs to be utilized to different dry Stevia plant renders out of its stem. Dried leaves of Stevia undergo a purification procedure involving extraction, filtration, and dehydration which complies with regulatory criteria of a specific country.
Yield in Stevia Cultivation:
The yield of Stevia harvest depends on factors such as variety, soil type, climate, plant age and crop management practices. In an average, one may obtain a yield of 3 to 4 tonnes/ha dry leaves from 4 to 5 cuttings of each year. Normally this crop is cultivated up to five years following having a onetime plantation.
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Marketing of Stevia:
Though medicinal plants have good demand in the market, you need to establish a marketing strategy prior to growing on a commercial scale. If you have some buyback arrangement, that will be wonderful.