About Safed Musli
Safed Musli (Chlorophytum borivillianum) is a tuber crop belonging to the family Liliaceae. There are about 17 species of Chlorophytum found in India. Among these, Chlorophytum borivillianum has good market both indigenously and globally. Safed Musli has been named in the Atharva Veda as one of the divine herbs, offering cure for many Ailments and health related problems.It is an annual crop capable of giving good returns to farmers under irrigated conditions. Safed Musli is found growing in thick forests in its natural form. The roots of safed musli are reported to contain carbohydrates (35-45), fiber (25-35%), alkaloids (15-25), proteins (5-10%), saponin (2-20%), which has the medicinal property of enhancing vitality and immunity to human beings. There are many therapeutic uses of Safed Musli where dried tubers are used as a curative for pre-natal and post-natal illness, arthritis, restorative and a health tonic etc. It also helps in correcting gynecological disorders Safed Musli is naturally grown in the hilly areas of Gujarat, Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh.
It is reported that the annual demand for dried Safed Musli roots is 650t in India. The natural source is getting fast depleted necessitating field cultivation of this medicinally important crop. The demand of Safed Musali (38000 tons/annum) is much higher than the supply/collection (5000 tons/annum). Looking to the increasing demand and alarming dangers, it has become inevitable to undertake the commercial cultivation of the Safed Musali. During the last decade, some systematic efforts have been made to popularize the cultivation of musli, which shows that its cultivation is much more profitable than many of the traditional crops.
Uses Of Safed Musali
Safed Musli has very good Ayurvedic medicinal use. It is rich source of over 25 alkaloids, vitamins, minerals, proteins, carbohydrates, steroid, seponins and polysaccharides etc. A number of health tonics are prepared from Safed Musli. It is essential part of a traditional diet of mothers (after delivery) in the form of Laddoos. Efforts in countries like USA and England are also on to convert it into chips to use it as a nutritious breakfast. Safed Musli is a traditional medicinal plant. Its tubers roots are used in ayurvedic medicines. Roots are used for the preparation of nutritive tonic used in general sexual weakness. There is a vast demand of Safed Musli all over the world.
Other Main Uses Of Safed Musli
- For Therapeutic application in Ayurveda, Unani and Allopathy
- As a Curative for Physical weakness and many illnesses
- As a Curative for Natal and Post-natal problems
- As an Aphrodisiac Agent and Vitalizer
- As a General Sex tonic
- As an Immunity-improving drug
- As a Remedy for Diabetes & Arthritis
It grows successfully in wide range of temperature and rainfall. It prefers sandy loamy to loamy having normal pH range, super phosphate, decomposed farm yard manure Green manure and good drainage system for its better tuber growth. Ploughing is done in the month of March-April and sowing of seeds of sunhmp (Tag), or sesbabia spp. (dencha) at a rate of 50 - 60 kg per acres for green manure. Before commencement of flowers sunhump/dencha mixed with soil and irrigate for easy and early decomposition. Deep ploughing is done in the month of mid May and mixed 30-40 tonnes of decomposed FYM/acre. For breaking of clods and better palvorisation of soil, -4 tillers are the best. Final bed preparation activities must be completed before commencement of first rainfall (If depends on localities). Safed musli cultivation requires raised bed for easy tuber growth and for proper drainage.
Safed musli is a kharif crop. It is sown in the month of June, after first shower. Tubers of Safed Musli carefully detached from the bunch with dise portion. In a acre at the spacing of 6"x6", about 450-500kgs of planting material is required. Before sowing planting material is (bunches) treated with a contact fungicide and a bactericide. Planting done at the depth of 1/2-I" below soil to avoid exposure of its collar region with high intensity of rainfall. Just after planting irrigated the field, and after that maintain moisture in the field for its better sprouting and growth. Sprouting taken place within 7-15 days of planting.
Preparation Of Beds
Being a tuber crop Safed Musli is cultivated on raised beds. These beds are raised with the use of an implement attached to tractor the width of the bed is 2.5-3 ft. at bottom & top of bed is 1.5-2.0ft, and height of the bed is 0.8-1.2 ft.
For the control of weed growth, 2-3 weeding done in 30-40 days. Before going for weeding, first irrigate the field properly a day before for easy hand weeding.
After sprouting, maintain moisture and weeding for it's healthy growth and better tuber formation. Flowering started just after sprouting or 20-30 days after sprouting depends upon climatic conditions or plant nature. Within 2-3 months, and simultaneously fresh tuber formation started and in the month of November-December. leaf yellowing started and leaf fall taken place with complete tuber formation. At this stage tubers are not hardy and having thin and smooth skin and high water percentage and not suitable for next year’s planting material. For that purpose left the tubers for 2-3 months for hardening, thick, and rough skin formation. For harvesting field is properly irrigated for easy and safe dig out of tubers. Its cropping cycle is of seven to nine months.
After digging out the musli tubers from the soil, they are thoroughly washed in fresh water. The large and healthy fingers are separated from the tubers and the small ones are kept aside to be used as planting material for the next season (Ventilated racks are used to store Safed Musali for next year in controlled temperature of 25-31oC and at a relative humidity of 50-65%). The large fingers are taken for processing. The outer brown skin is peeled off with a stainless steel knife and sun dried for three to four days. Dried fingers are packed in polythene bags and sent to the market.
On an average the crop gives a yield of 18-25 q of wet musli tubers per acre. After peeling and drying nearly 20% dry musli (4-5 q) is finally obtained.
We can also take intercrop in Musali. Pushpak Ayurdhan Musali Farm developed a formula with taking intercrop like ‘Drum Steaks’. It is very profitable for farmers.
The Economics of ‘ Safed Musali ’
|Cost & Benefits|
|Provisional Cost to Cultivate Safed Musli in One Acre of Land||Rs. in Lakhs|
|Per Acre Seeds Required 500 Kg @ Rs.300/-||1,50,000.00|
|Peeling Expenses of 450 Kgs @40/Kg wet Musli|
|Total Investment||Rs. 2,29,000.00|
|Details of Cultivation Expenses|
|Compost- 5 trolleys||4,500.00|
|Wormicompost 1000 Kgs @ Rs.4 per kg||4,000.00|
|Land Preparation + Bed Raising||10,000.00|
|Labor Plantation (Sowing) Expenses||8,000.00|
|Labor weeding (3 times) Expenses||12,000.00|
|Return after Production|
|Expected Harvest of Wet tubers Total 2,250 Kg||3,06,000.00|
|1800 Kg of tubers will dry to 360 Kg (@20% of wet) @ Rs 850x360||1,50,000.00|
|Stock for Next year cultivation 500 Kg @ Rs. 300/-|
|Less Total Investment||2,29, 000.00|
|Net Profit Rs.||2,27,000 .00|