Castor Farming – Introduction
The Castor is one of the most popular plants in the farming industry. Commonly this plant grows in the wild, but considering its business value the farming industry is extending its hands in commercial Castor Cultivation. Castor plant happens to be the world’s most poisonous plant. Still, due to numerous medical benefits, it takes no effort to enter the profit-making field of farming. More to that, this castor plant is used for ornamental purposes. The plant has big and striking foliage, thorns (which are kind of star-shaped) and red seed capsules. As this plant invites a tropical touch and that too in a low-cost; people tend to plant them in the domestic platform, besides commercial farming. But in that case having safety measures, especially for the children or pets, is necessary.
Castor plant is itself an interesting thing in terms of its usages, varies cultivation process and of course for its ever-increasing demand in the medical sphere. Mainly coming from Eastern African and Indian origin, the castor plant was important in ancient botany since past ages. Even today Castor is a common name of every home and the credit goes to its oil. Castor oil is famous for its uncountable benefits. It can act as the lubricant of high-speed engines, varnishes, plasticizers and more. Even documents claim in ancient Egyptian tombs of 4000 B.C. the oil was used in lamps for lighting. We can say that though overgrown, undesirable to many yet castor plant produces one of nature’s finest natural oils. Besides its medicinal and lighting benefits, castor leaves become an element of paper-pulp and food of silkworms.
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The international and local market is looking forward to the farming of this plant. In India moderate rainfall and moderately fertile lands help its plantation.
Scientific Name of Castor: Ricinus communis
Top Countries Producing Castor
Castor plant (Ricinus communis) is grown in arid and semi-arid regions. Its harvest on a commercial scale, happens mainly in 30 different countries, of which India, Russia, Thailand, China, Brazil, Ethiopia and Philippines are the most important castor seed producing nations which count about 88% of the world’s production.
Common Name Of Castor In Other Languages
Castor oil plant has too many names to count. in colloquial languages it gets its name as wonder tree, amanakku, chittamankku, arandi, kege, ricin, eranda, gandharva hasta, castorbean, erand, graine de ricin, tangantangan Oil Plant and so on.
To be specific here goes the list:
Arandi Ka Tel (Hindi)
Erandela Tela (Marathi)
Amanakku Enney (Tamil)
Rerira Tela (Bengali)
Different Varieties Of Castor
The cultivating varieties of this plant depend on the branching type of plant, stem color, nature of capsules, the content of oil, duration of cultivation and of course the size of the seed. Even in India, there are varieties of Castor. (Jyothi), Kiran (PCS-136), GAUC-1, VI-9, S-20, J-1andGCH 7, AKC-1, Girija are some of them.
Cultivation Of Castor
The variety of castor must be selected based on where the farming has to be done. The castor can develop a good quality when it is grown in specific climatic conditions. So, proper growing conditions must be followed for castor cultivation. The soil must be selected properly. The climate must be suitable for growing castors.
Care and developing castor beans is basic and easy. Castor seed development, which had lost the enthusiasm of the farmers due to higher info costs and decreased edges, is pulling in them once more. New cultivating systems are making it more prudent and high-yielding for them. However, the sowing and collecting periods inside the country vary depending upon the diverse areas where the cultivation would be done. Castor seed takes around half-a-month in winter to grow according to the predominant temperatures. The plants may achieve a tallness of thirty to ninety cm. But if planted in rich soils with great precipitation conditions then the similar assortments may accomplish the statures of 3 to 4 meters.
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Soil Conditions For Castor Farming
Castor plants are generally grown not in excessively fertile soils rather they grow in deep, moderately fertile soils, with slightly acidic conditions (pH 5.0 to 6.5), well-drained, sandy loams.
Climatic Conditions For Castor Farming
Castor crop indicates to tropical harvest and is produced annually. They are grown by sowing the seeds in warm conditions. It needs a fitting and steady rainfall. It is planted usually all through the months of July and August. Castor plant has a period of four to five months and is commonly yielded in the months of December and January.
Land Preparation For Castor Farming
Castor harvest can be developed on an extensive variety of soils if they are genuinely profound and all around depleted. Overwhelming muds, with poor seepage, and muddy soils are unsatisfactory for castor production. The reasonable soils for castor are deep, moderately fertile, with somewhat acidic conditions (pH 5.0 to 6.5), all around depleted, sandy topsoils. Excessively fertile soils are not wanted, as they support exorbitant vegetative development at the expense of harvest.
For good development, castor requires an all-around pounded seed-bed with free sub-soil up to 45 cm profundity. For yearly assortments, the seedbed must be without weed as youthful plants are fragile. Great weed control is fundamental, both pre-and post-rise. It doesn’t require fine tilth, yet for germination, it requires satisfactory dampness for a more drawn out period in the seedbed, ideally to a profundity of fifteen to twenty cm.
Propagation Methods For Castor Farming
Growing castor beans plant is possible by seeds. Soak castor seeds in a glass of water for 24 hours before planting. Use filtered or purified water instead of tap water.`
Planting Methods For Castor Farming
For planting the Castor seeds must be solid, vigorous, and originate from productive mother plants. Castor bean is typically planted toward the beginning of the rainy season during the later part of May and early June, or toward the end of the stormy season in the late September and early October. Sow in such dates/periods as to maintain a strategic distance from wet climate.
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Irrigation Methods For Castor Farming
The first irrigation must be provided at the time of sowing of seeds. After that, irrigation must be provided accordingly. The castor prefers dry and humid soil. So, there is no need for providing excessive irrigation. Only when the plant becomes dry or there is excess dry weather, the irrigation may be provided. In the rainy season, extra care must be taken. There must not be any waterlogging. There is no need for irrigation. But, the extra water must be drained out of the field. For that, proper drainage channels must be present in the field. To save water, appropriate irrigation methods may be applied. In winter, less irrigation is required. For irrigating the crop, saline water must not be used.
Manure And Fertiliser Application For Castor Farming
The farmstead fertilizer must be given at the season of land planning. From that point forward, appropriate amounts of farmstead excrement must be connected in the castor field. After the primary year, the measure of excrement and manures must be expanded till the tenth year. A dirt test must be done before compost application. The manure dosage prescribed for castor is 40 N-40 P-20 K kilogram for each hector. Castor bean needs a lot of nitrogen, particularly amid its initial advancement. Lopsided nitrogen application empowers the development of foliage to the detriment of bloom and seed arrangement.
Intercultural Operations For Castor Farming
The weeds must be removed whenever necessary. Proper pruning and training methods are very important for proper maintenance of Castor plant. A combination of different methods for weed control may become very effective for weed control. Harrowing also reduces the emergence of weeds. Raking of the soil must be done occasionally. Raking helps the soil to absorb more nutrients. Sometimes, natural methods may also be successful in the control of weeds.
Pests And Disease Control Methods For Castor Farming
In India, the Capsule borer (Dichocrocis Punctiferalis) drills into youthful and aging containers, and the Castor semilooper (Achoea Janata) are the most exceedingly bad pests. In Tanganyika, harm by capsid and myriad bugs are a constraining element making youthful organic product drop. Green stinkbugs, Leaf-containers, Leaf-diggers, and Grasshoppers are vermin that eat the takes off. Most creepy crawlies might be controlled by bug sprays. Since a portion of the assortments is very tall, wind storms are a potential risk to a harvest.
The greater part of the maladies can be controlled by splashing of suitable chemicals and pesticides. These sicknesses can be maintained a strategic distance from if the harvest administration is done legitimately. Legitimate seed treatment and utilizing great assortments may end up being useful in the control of numerous illnesses.
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Yield Of Castor
Average seed yields range from nine hundred to thousand kilogram per hector under irrigation and three to four hundred kilograms per hector without adequate moisture. Some improved types of castor plants that mainly grow in Brazil and the United States yield thirteen hundred kilograms per hector, and interestingly it grows to five thousand kilograms per hector.
In India the castor plants yield more or less five hundred sixty kilograms per hector. Oil content of seeds varies from thirty-five to fifty-five percent, suggesting potential oil yields of 200–2,750 kilogram per hector. In the time of World War II, castor bean production increased in Thailand, South America, and Haiti.
When it comes to castor; non-mechanical farming sector inclines toward shattering CVS. Seeds of Castor are gathered when the plant is completely developed and the leaves are dry, in around 95– 180 days relying upon the cv. In tropics, the seed collection happens from wild or local plants. Planting and reaping might be finished by hand strategies or be totally motorized. Harvesting should start before the rainy season in tropical districts, however, in dry locales, it is best to reap when all organic products are developed.
In India seeds are picked in November; in the United States, collecting starts in October. In the tropics manual harvesting is popular; the spikes are cut or broken off, the cases peeled off into a wagon or sled, or into the containers strapped to the workers. Unless the seeds are dry, they should be spread out to dry rapidly. In India, organic products are gathered and spread in heaps to dry in the sun until the point that they darken. In India, seeds are demolished with sticks, winnowed and screened to expel bodies and trash. When little measures of seed are included, they might be decorticated on a rubbing board. A standard thresher is not reasonable since the blender bar or peg drums separate the delicate seeds.
Post-Harvest Management And Marketing Of Castor
The crop should be harvested only after identifying a specific market for the production, and after having an agreement with the purchaser. Vital investigation of the supply markets is needed. The farmers should look into the factors like purchase, profit and pricing.
Health Benefits of Castor Oil
- Castor Oil helps to Heal Inflamed Skin
- Castor Oil helps to Fight Signs Of Aging
- Castor Oil helps to Promote Hair Growth
- Castor Oil helps to Treat Scalp Infections
- Castor Oil helps to Reduce Joint Pain/Arthritis and helps to Boost Immunity
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Castor Farming – Conclusion
The castor has become an important crop over the years. It is mainly cultivated for its oil all over the world. The oil is very important in the medical market. Besides, the plants are also grown for ornamental purposes. If the cultivation is done properly, the profits can be good too. The export of the castor harvest can also give high profits. For the proper cultivation, modern tools and techniques must be used. Proper cultivation of castor will also increase the demand in the local and the international market. The main problem of castor is marketing. But, it is slowly gaining popularity. It can be increased by the modernization of cultivation techniques.