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Nutmeg (Myristica Fragrans)is a Handsome Evergreen Tree

Nutmeg (Myristica Fragrans)is a Handsome Evergreen Tree

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Published by Eswara Reddy
NUTMEG (Myristica fragrans)IS A HANDSOME EVERGREEN TREE
NUTMEG (Myristica fragrans)IS A HANDSOME EVERGREEN TREE

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Categories:Types, Research
Published by: Eswara Reddy on Jul 23, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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07/23/2013

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 NUTMEG
(Myristica fragrans)
IS A HANDSOME EVERGREEN TREE
S.Eswara Reddy dr_esreddy@yahoo.co.in
INTRODUCTION:
 Nutmeg is a native of Moluccas Island and is now grown in tropical countries of the world. It was introduced to India towards the end of 18
th
centuary and in India, it wasgrown in certain pockets of Kerala, Tamilnadu and Karnataka. More specifically it isgrown near Courtallam of Tirunelveli dist and round about the Burliar zone in theeastern slopes of Niligiris and Kaladi in Kerala.
 
USES:
Mace is used as a culinary spice and largely as a flavoring agent. It contains volatile oilmachine’s.
The pericarp is used for pickling when the fruit is at tender stage.
 Nutmeg is used as a stimulant and carminative .
 Nutmeg contains 25 – 45% of fixed oil known as Oleum myristica expressum.
Wormy Nutmeg generally used for distillation gives a much better yield thansound nutmeg.
The oil is used for flavoring baked goods, cakes, cookies, puddings and pickles.
The oil has been recommended for the treatment of inflammations of bladder andurinary tract.
 
 Nutmeg butter is used in the manufacture of scented oils, perfumes and soaps andas flavoring agent in cooking and confectionary.
Myristacine and Climicine are the hallucinogenic principles present nutmeg andmace.
 
BOTANY:
 Nutmeg is a handsome evergreen tree with dense foliage. Trees are 10 -12m high, branches are spreading with dark grey bark, leaves are shinny and ablong to ovate inshape. Flowers appear in cymes. Nutmeg trees are dioecious in nature. The female andmale trees can easily be identified by trained eye in that the male trees have erect branches and the leaves are generally smaller in size and conspicuously less leafy thanthe female trees. The shape of the tree is also not regular.
VARIETIES:
Basic types of nutmegs are West Indian and East Indian type. West Indian variety isgrown in the islands of Grenada and Trinidad while East Indian type is found in Sianey,Sangihe, Ternate, Banda and Jawa. On the whole East Indian nutmegs are aromatic andsuperior, similarly West Indian mace dries to a pale yellow colour possessing acharacteristic flavor. On the other hand East Indian mace has brilliant orage colour withrich flavor .
PREPARATION OF NURSERY:
Seedbeds with a mixture of garden soil and sand in the ratio of 3:1 are prepared. 90-120cms wide, 15cms height. A layer of sand about 2-3cms height is spread over the beds.
SOWING:
Seeds are sown 6cms apart and 3cms depth. While sowing seeds may be sown either flator vertically with the micropyllar end up. Otherwise the stem gets bent and twistedduring the process of germination. After sowing the seed beds should be covered with
 
the layer of sand . Seedlings should be transferred from beds to pots immediately after sprouting.
SPACING:
The spacing adopted by the farmers at present varies widely from 3-9m. In closelyspaced gardens the infiltration of sunlight is less which accounts for lower yield. The best yield in nutmeg is observed in isolated trees. In view of this seedlings are to be planted at spacing of 9m x 9m on pits 90 x 90 x 90 cms .
SEX IN NUTMEG TREES:
The determination of sex at seedling stage has been claimed based on leaf form andveins, the colour of young sprouts, vigorous seedling and orientation of branches, Noneof them have been found reliable till now. The difference in shape of caliumoxalatecrystals in the female and the male nutmeg plants are reported by Nayar et all 1977 alsodid not seem to have much practical application since this distinction is clear only inmature plants. The problem of identification of sex in nutmeg can be solved to greatextent by sex linked characters in seedlings and correlating them with the sex of adulttrees later .
HARVESTING AND YIELD:
Seedling trees start bearing in 7-8 years reaching full bearing when they are about 25years old and continued to yield well upto 60 years. 10 years old tree may expected toyield 500 – 800 fruits and a 20 years old tree 2000 – 3000 fruits. The peak harvest areduring two seasons that is march – April and August – September .Individual fruitweighs on an average 60gms of which the seed weighs 6 – 7 gm, mace 3 - 4gm and therest pericarp .

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