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How to Grow Kalmegh Plant: A Great Medicinal Herb

Andrographis paniculata is a Scientific name for the Kalmegh plant. In Hindi, Nees is called as kalmegh. It is well-known in India and Sri Lanka as a significant local crop. Kalmegh is also known as 'BhuiNeem,' since it looks like neem and, despite being smaller, has a bitter flavor.

Sandeep Kr Tiwari
Kalmegh is an important ingredient in several ayurvedic remedies for fever and liver disease that are regularly prescribed by ayurvedic doctors.
Kalmegh is an important ingredient in several ayurvedic remedies for fever and liver disease that are regularly prescribed by ayurvedic doctors.

Andrographis paniculata is the scientific name for the Kalmegh plant. It is well-known in India and Sri Lanka as a significant local crop. Kalmegh is also known as 'BhuiNeem,' because it looks like neem and, despite being smaller, has a bitter flavor. Kalmegh is an annual herb that grows straight. In tribal medicine and in Indian Siddha and Ayurveda medicine, it is regarded as a wonder drug.

Importance of Kalmegh Plant

Kalmegh is an important ingredient in several ayurvedic remedies for fever and liver disease that are regularly prescribed by ayurvedic doctors. Kalmegh is frequently used in Indian traditional medicine to treat a variety of diseases. This plant is said to have astringent, anodyne, tonic, and alexipharmic characteristics, making it effective in the treatment of dysentery, cholera, diabetes, influenza, bronchitis, piles, hepatomegaly, skin disorders, fever, and worms. The presence of andrographolide, a diterpene lactone, is the main bitter ingredient in kalmegh.

Soil And Climate Requirements to grow Kalmegh

It may be grown on a wide range of soils with moderate fertility, from loam to lateritic soils. It can also be grown in gloomy wastelands. The plant requires hot, humid conditions with plenty of sunlight to thrive. With the arrival of the monsoon, the plant develops lushly and begins to flower in September, when the temperature begins to normalize. The plant thrives in tropical and subtropical climates across India. It can withstand a few hours of partial shade from trees, although it is grown in open areas.

Nursery raising

  • In early September, seeds are steeped in water for 24 hours before being sown in nursery beds.

  • For one hectare of land, approximately 650–750gram seeds are required.

  • The nursery is prepared with a 1:1:1 ratio of soil, sand, and organic matter and sowed in early September at 5 cm spacing in rows, with germination taking 8-10 days.

  • Seedlings are planted in the field at 30X15 cm or 15X15 cm spacing when they are six weeks old.

  • The seed rate for a directly planted crop is 1.5 kg/ha and it is dispersed thinly. Although it matures quickly, it is best raised in a nursery.

  • FYM is mixed in the soil at a rate of 20 kilograms per square metre for nursery beds.

Weeding

The field should be free from weeds because it is an herbaceous plant. During the crop season, two to three weeding are required, at 20 days and 60 days after transplantation.

Manures and fertilizer application

Kalmegh must be grown without the use of chemical fertilizers or pesticides. For higher quality output, organic manures such as Farm Yard Manure (FYM) At 10t/ha and Vermi-Compost @ 2t/ha may be used.

Harvesting and processing

The crop matures after 120 days of sowing and is ready to harvest. When the majority of the plants bloom, it is harvested. The plants should be uprooted at this point. A small number of healthy plants, on the other hand, should be left in the field for seed production. When the fruits are fully ripe, they should be harvested and dried in the sun, and the seeds should be collected. The seeds should be dried completely in the open sun. After that, they're preserved in airtight containers until they're ready to sow again.

Yield

A well-maintained crop grown during monsoon season yields (whole pant) 2.5 tons per hectare should be recorded. It has sizeable demand and yields a reasonable profit to the growers.

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