Palmyrah (Borassus flabellifer); Palmae

SVPR – 1

Arid, deep sandy & loamy soils are suitable. Dry areas with low rainfall are also ideal.

Seed Germination of 63.25 % is achieved 6 weeks after sowing
Seed nut should be high yielder of padaneer & fruits, dwarf in stature, early and regular bearer, free from pest & diseases. Select matured fruit bunches and yellow tinch in stylar region. Seeds are stored in shade for 3 weeks. Shrunken, weight less and bored seeds are rejected. Seeds may be directly sown in situ or in nursery to raise the seedlings. For direct sowing, 3 – 4 whole fruits are planted in pits (20x20x20cm) at 10 m apart and half filled with sand and soil mixture. Pit is covered with dried leaves. Sowing may be taken up during rainy months (November). Germination takes place within 3 weeks.
Seeds can be sown in mound formed by keeping sand to form a bed of 1 m broad, 60 cm height or nursery beds built with bricks of 2 m broad, 60 cm height. Seeds are sown in 10 cm space and covered with sand. About 1 year old seedling is lifted from the nursery and containerized in polythene bags. After rooting transplant in the main field.
3m x 3m (1,110 palms/ha)
Generally farmers adopt Sheep penning to the palms. Application of 10 kg FYM/ pit before planting. Dosage may be increased biannually till reaching 60 kg FYM/tree/year
Consists of gap filling; inter ploughing, basin rectification in the initial few years,. Gap filling may be carried out by using containerized seedlings. Basin rectification has to be done before rains; it helps collection and storage of rain water.
Pruning of 30 per cent leaves @ 10 per cent in phased manner.
Cowpea, moringa, greengram, redgram, bengalgram, ber, amla, pomegranate, west Indian cherry & guava can be intercropped.
Palmyrah is a slow grower. First frond appears in about 5 months. First fan shaped leaves appears only in the 2nd year. When it attains the height of 12 – 18 m, comes to flowering (13 – 15 yrs) for padaneer (Sweet sap) purpose. Average of 100 – 200 lit obtained for a period of 4 months from Feb – May. Padaneer and fruit yield are highly variable in individual palms.
Extraction of sap (Neera/ Padaneer) from inflorescence is called tapping. According to sex of the palm & age of the inflorescence, different kinds of tappings are available.
In male palm, sheath covering the young inflorescence is removed and dried for 3 weeks. End is cut every time & pot is tied (1- 1 ½ months).
One month old spikes are selected. Each male spike bearing sessile flowers is pretreated by pressing and stroking & 3 – 6 such spikes are brought together, wrapped with leaves and fitted to a pot.
It has to be done in female palm to soften the tissue by hitting the inflorescence main axis with iron rod
Employed when the inflorescence is about 2 – 3 months old. Female palms are tapped for a longer period. i.e., April- Dec. and male for Dec – Feb. Sap is collected twice a day. Each time at the end of the collection of sap, a new cut surface is made by thin slicing. Tapped sap is called neera or padaneer.

150 litres of padaneer / tree / year
24 kg jaggery/ tree / year
Jaggery recovery/litre of padaneer: 180 – 250 g of jaggery