Spices

Fertilizer Mixtures

Spices Fertilizer Mixtures

A spice is a seed, fruit, root, bark, or other plant substance primarily used for flavoring, coloring or preserving food. Spices are distinguished from herbs, which are the leaves, flowers, or stems of plants used for flavoring or as a garnish.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon is the dried bark of the perennial tree of C.zeylanicum of the Lauraceae family. True cinnamon is native to Sri Lanka. Cinnamon was originally grown wild in central hill country of Sri Lanka. The history of cinnamon dates back to about 2800 B.C where it can be found referred as ”kwai” in Chinese writings. Cinnamon is even mentioned in the Bible when Moses used it as an ingredient for his anointing oil in ancient Rome. It was burned in Roman funerals perhaps partly as a way to minimize the odor of dead bodies. Emperor Nero is said to have burned a years’ worth of dry supply of cinnamon at the funeral of his wife Poppaea Sabina. Ancient Egyptians used it in embalming mummies because of pleasant odors and its preservative qualities.

Cinnamon Fertilizer Mixtures Available at Allied Commercial Fertilizers (Pvt)Ltd

N
P
K
Cinnamon Mixture(U)
23
07
15
Cinnamon (SA)
08
08
12

Fertilizer Recommendation According to Plant Density

Plant Spacing
Number of Bushes/ha
Amount of fertilizer(g)/ Bush/Season
1.2 x 0.6 m (4’x2’)
13890
33
1.2 x 0.9 m (4’x3’)
9260
50
1.2 x 1.2 m (4’x4’)
6950
65
  • The mixture should be applied twice a year as the rains begin during the Yala and Maha seasons.
  • In addition, application of Dolomite at the rate of 500 kg /ha/year is recommended, particularly in areas where leaf chlorosis symptoms are observed.
  • A band of 30 cm should be left unapplied from the base of the clump.

Ginger

Ginger is believed to have originated in East Asia with a historic record expanding over 3000 years. Ginger has been used as a spice in ancient times. It has been widely used in Chinese and in Ayurvedic medicine. There is information that even Emperor Nero and the Roman army used ginger as a medicine. It was found that ginger was imported to the European countries as a spice by 1547 A.C. In recent years Ginger has been cultivated as a commercial crop in large scale in many countries such as China, India, Australia, Fiji, Hawai, Hongkong, Jamaica, Japan, Nigeria, Pakistan, West Africa and Taiwan.

Fertilizer application

To add adequate Ca and Mg, dolomite is mixed with the soil immediately after ploughing at the rate of 2 mt./ha. Saw dust ash is also added to the soil at the rate of 3-4kg/sq, meter of the bed during land preparation period to achieve a high yield. Fertilizer is applied after weeding and should be mixed with the soil. After that beds should be mulched. Fertilizer is applied with rain or should be irrigated after fertilizer application. Glyricidia leaves can be added as an organic fertilizer to reduce the need of chemical fertilizer and to protect the soil moisture.

Fertilizer recommendation

Time
Organic fertilizer
Urea(kg
TSP (kg)
MOP (kg)
Basal
At the time of planting
20 mt
100
1st app.
After 01 months
65
100
2nd app.
After 03 months
65
100

Fertilizer is applied after weeding and should be mixed with the soil. After that beds should be mulched. Fertilizer is applied with rain or should be irrigated after fertilizer application. In addition glyricidia leaves can be added as an organic fertilizer and thereby can cut down the need of chemical fertilizer and to protect the soil moisture.

Turmeric

Turmeric has originated in India more than 5000 years ago. Initially, it was cultivated as a dye as its’ vivid yellow color works brilliantly as a coloring agent. People started using it for cosmetic and beautification purposes and eventually as a medicine. Later it became popular as a spice. Turmeric had reached China by 700 A.D, East Africa by 800 A.D and West Africa by 1200 A.D. Then it had begun to become popular throughout the world. It is known that the Arab traders had carried turmeric with them to Europe in the 13th century.

Vanilla

Vanilla is an economically important crop as it is the source of natural vanillin. It is believed that vanilla is indigenous to northeastern Mexico. It is ancient Totonaco Indians of Mexico who were the first keepers of the secrets of vanilla. When they were defeated by the Aztecs, they were demanded to relinquish their exotic fruit, vanilla pods. Later Aztecs were defeated by the Spanish and Spaniard Hernando Cortez, the Spanish mariner, returned to Spain with the precious plunder vanilla beans which were combined with cacao to make an unusual and pleasing drink. For eighty years this special beverage was only enjoyed by the nobility and the very rich. Then in 1602 Hugh Morgan, Apothecary to Queen Elizabeth I, suggested that vanilla could be used as a flavoring all by itself and versatility of the exotic bean was finally uncovered. However, only in 1858, Gobley was able to isolate vanillin from vanilla pods. Today vanilla is grown by Madagascar, Indonesia, Mexico, Tahiti and few other countries including Sri Lanka as a commercial crop.

Pepper

Pepper is the most widely used spice in the world and known as “King of the Spices”. Pepper crop is native to South Asia and historical records reveal that pepper is originated in South India. Peppercorns were a much-prized trade good often referred to also as “black gold” and used by as a form of commodity money. Until after the Middle age, virtually all of the black pepper found in Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa travelled there from India’s Malabar region. It was some part of the value of these spices that led to the European efforts to find a sea route to India and consequently to the European Colonial occupation of the country as well as European discovery and colonization of America/s. Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, India, and Brazil are the main pepper producers in the world. The synthetic fertilizer dosage can be reduced by 50 % by applying 10 – 15 kg of fresh Gliricidia leaves and tender branches as mulch per vine four times per year.

Pepper Fertilizer Mixtures Available at Allied Commercial Fertilizers (Pvt)Ltd

N
P
K
MG
Pepper Mixture
14
11
14
02
Years
Beginning of the first monsoonal rains
Beginning of the second monsoonal rains
1st Year (6 months after planting)
250
250
2nd Year
500
500
3rd year and onward
700
100

The synthetic fertilizer dosage can be reduced by 50 % by applying 10 – 15 kg of fresh Gliricidia leaves and tender branches as mulch per vine four times per year.

Cocoa

The Cocoa tree is believed to have been originated in the Amazon basin and spreading to Central America particularly to Mexico. It was known and used by the natives in the region, such as Olmec and Mayas, and they considered it as the “food of gods”. Cocoa seeds were used as currency by the Aztecs who also enjoyed a type of bitter chocolate drink. Christopher Columbus discovered cocoa beans in America but only after 20 years later, Hernando Cortes discovered the bitter drink used by the Aztecs and sent the beans and recipes back to King Charles V of Spain. The Spanish refined the recipes adding sugar and heating the ingredients to improve the taste. By 1828 the cocoa press was developed, allowing the extraction of cocoa butter. Later around 1879 the Swiss developed both milk chocolate and solid chocolate. By 1800’s European colonial rulers introduced cocoa to their colonies and after that, it was developed in Africa and Asia as commercial plantations.

Cocoa Fertilizer Mixture Available at Allied Commercial Fertilizers (Pvt)Ltd.

N
P
K
MG
Cocoa Mixture
14
11
14
02
Years
Beginning of the first monsoonal rains
Beginning of the second monsoonal rains
1st Year (6 months after planting)
125
125
2nd Year
250
250
3rd year and onward
350
350

Coffee

Coffee trees are pruned short to conserve their energy and aid in harvesting, but they can grow to more than 30 feet (9 meters) high. Each tree is covered with green, waxy leaves growing opposite each other in pairs. Coffee cherries grow along the branches. Because it grows in a continuous cycle, it’s not unusual to see flowers, green fruit and ripe fruit simultaneously on a single tree. It takes nearly a year for a cherry to mature after first flowering, and about 5 years of growth to reach full fruit production. While coffee plants can live up to 100 years, they are generally the most productive between the ages of 7 and 20. Proper care can maintain and even increase their output over the years, depending on the variety.

Coffee Fertilizer Mixture Available at Allied Commercial Fertilizers (Pvt)Ltd.

N
P
K
MG
Coffee Mixture
14
11
14
02

Coffee demands a steady supply of nutrients and this need can be met by the application of inorganic fertilizers in required doses.

Doses for Robusta Varieties – Application Rates per Plant in Grams.

Years
Beginning of the first monsoonal rains
Beginning of the second monsoonal rains
1st Year (6 months after planting)
125
125
2nd Year
250
250
3rd year and onward
350
350

Arabica Varieties – Application Rates per Plant in Grams

Years
Beginning of the first monsoonal rains
Beginning of the second monsoonal rains
1st Year (6 months after planting)
100
100
2nd Year
150
150
3rd year and onward
200
200

Clove

The clove tree is a medium sized symmetrically shaped tree with smooth grey bark. It is believed to have originated in Maluku Islands in Indonesia. Clove along with nutmeg and pepper were highly prized in Roman Era. Cloves were traded by Arabs in the Middle ages but in the 15th century Portugal took over the trade. The Portuguese brought large quantities of cloves to Europe mainly from Malku Islands and valued it at seven grams of gold per kg. Later the Spanish then the Dutch dominated the trade till the seventeenth century. The French introduced clove to Mauritius in the year 1770 subsequently the cultivations were introduced to Guiana, Zanzibar, West Indies and most of Brazil. It is not known how and when clove was introduced to Sri Lanka but may be the Arab traders or Colonial rulers may have brought the plant to the country as Sri Lanka was a major trading hub for spices during that time.

Recommended Fertilizer Mixture for Clove

N
P
K
MG
Clove Fertilizer Mixture
13
08
25
01

Application rates per plant per year in grams

Years
Beginning of the first monsoonal rains
Beginning of the second monsoonal rains
1st Year (6 months after planting)
120
120
2nd Year
250
250
3rd year and onward
375
375
4th year
500
500
5th Year
625
625
6th Year
750
750
7th Year
875
875
8th Year
1000
1000
9th Year
1125
1125
10th Year
1250
1250

Nutmeg

Nutmeg is a perennial evergreen spice tree and a native of Molluccas in East Indonesia. There is some evidence to suggest that the Roman priests may have burned nutmeg as a form of incense. It is also known to have been used as a prized and costly spice in medieval cuisine, used as flavorings, medicines, preserving agents and that was at the time highly valued in the European markets. Nutmeg is reported to have been introduced to Sri Lanka at the beginning of the 19th century but there is evidence that the crop had been brought here even before that by merchants who were travelling on the Silk Road.

Recommended Fertilizer Mixture for Nutmeg.

N
P
K
MG
Nutmeg Fertilizer Mixture
13
08
25
01

Application rates (g / plant)

Years
Beginning of the first monsoonal rains
Beginning of the second monsoonal rains
1st Year (6 months after planting)
120
120
2nd Year
250
250
3rd year and onward
375
375
4th year
500
500
5th Year
625
625
6th Year
750
750
7th Year
875
875
8th Year
1000
1000
9th Year
1125
1125
10th Year
1250
1250

Betel

  • Always ensure soil is sufficiently moist after fertilizer application.
  • Integrated use of organic manure and chemical fertilizers is more beneficial than using either source alone.
  • Allied Commercial Betel Fertilizer is also available in 2 kg and 5Kg home garden range as well.

Betel Fertilizer Mixtures Available at Allied Commercial Fertilizers (Pvt)Ltd.

N
P
K
MG
Export Black Betel Mix(U)
21
07
14
04
Allied Super Betel Mixture
15.5
07
12
3.5
Betel Mixture
10
09
09