So you want high-yield ginger plants? The right fertilizer can make a world of difference.
Did you know that growing a ginger farm is very easy and profitable?
It’s not a hard task as people told you. Though ginger plants need nothing but water and patience to grow into a delicious spice, yields will be diminished if you choose not to give your ginger supplement feed.
Do you want to grow ginger in your farm? This complete guide tells you all the how, where, and when about ginger cultivation as well as the best fertilizer for ginger.
What Is a Ginger Plant?
Ginger, Zingiber officinale, is an herbaceous plant in the family Zingiberaceae. It is an erect, reed-like perennial plant grown for its edible rhizome, which is commonly used as a spice. The rhizome has a brown skin covering a pale-yellow scented body.
The shoots originate from a multiple bases and wrap around one another. The leaves can grow as tall as 2.75 inches (7 cm) and wide as 0.7 inches (1.9 cm). Ginger bears cone-shaped, pale yellow flowers, which are borne on shorter stems. The ginger plant can reach 2ft. to 4ft. (0.6m to 1.2m) in height.
Ginger is widely used as a spice in cooking and can be used either fresh, dried, or in powdery form. Ginger essential oil can be extracted from the fresh rhizome.
Ginger can be used to flavor beverages. Also, ginger continues to be a popular plant for its medicinal values and remedy in India and China.
Basic Requirements for Ginger Plants
Being a tropical plant, ginger plants grow best in warm and sunny climates. Ginger plants require deep but well-draining loamy soil that is high in organic matter.
Ginger thrive in soil with pH between 5.5 and 6.5 and the soil temperature at planting should not fall below 25°C (77°F) though the ginger plant requires a minimum temperature of 15.5°C (59.9°F).
To increase the pH level of your soil, apply lime in the fall. Lime will reduce the acidity of your soil and will also supply calcium to the ginger plant during the next growing season.
Ginger requires an average annual rainfall of about 250cm to 300cm for optimal growth and development. In case of insufficient rainfall, additional irrigation may be required. However, note that ginger plants don’t tolerate waterlogged soils.
Fertilizer Requirements for Ginger Plants
Normally, you don’t need to apply fertilizer to your ginger if the ginger is planted in rich soil. That mean you need to choose a suitable location for growing the ginger plants.
However, the first step to take is to know the fertility needs of your soil. First test your soil and then apply fertilizer accordingly. If your soil is poor or you want to improve yield, you need to fertilize your ginger with a small amount of complete liquid fertilizer every month or few weeks.
You can also use pellet or granular fertilizer, especially when the ginger is planted outside. Side-dress the ginger with the pellet fertilizer. Make sure that the fertilizer is applied 10in. to 12in. away from the side of the ginger.
Direct fertilizer application can damage the ginger plant.
Begin fertilizer application right after ginger shoots emerge and continue fertilizing your ginger every few weeks after that. If you planted your ginger in an area that receives heavy rainfall, we recommend that you fertilize your ginger regularly, as rainfall can leach nutrients into the ground.
The best fertilizer for ginger is a low-nitrogen fertilizer, such as NPK 10-20-20. Using a fertilizer with too much nitrogen will cause ginger to produce excessive leaves at the expense of rhizome – this means that the rhizome yields will be reduced. Stop the fertilizer application once the ginger begins to flower.
You would need to amend the soil with a potassium-rich fertilizer several times as your ginger matures to produce plump rhizomes.
Aside from chemical fertilizers, you can also use organic fertilizers, such as fish emulsion and seaweed extract. The necessary nutrients needed to grow ginger are:
- Nitrogen: It is essential for chlorophyll, proteins, and amino acids. It is required in comprehensive portions.
- Phosphorus: It Performs a vital part of respiration. Phosphorus is also critical to the evolution of enzymes, phospholipids, and nucleic acids. It helps early plant vigor and stimulates fresh root extension.
- Potassium: This nutrient is necessary for yeast activation, osmosis, transpiration, and also the opening and closing of the stomata of the leaves.
When to Harvest Adult Ginger
Harvest your ginger as soon as they are mature. Don’t keep your ginger rhizome under the bed after they are mature. If you do so, your ginger may lose its weight and taste, and may even rot. Kindly note the following:
- It takes about eight to 10 months for ginger to get mature
- Begin harvesting your ginger right after eight to 10 months of planting
- You may begin harvesting your ginger for vegetable purpose after six months
The Proper Storing Process of Ginger
As said earlier, ginger can either be used in the fresh or dried state. Clean and fresh ginger should be kept in a cold environment with temperature between 10°C to 15°C. Storing ginger in dry state involves some simple steps:
- You need to clean the ginger carefully using fresh water
- Dry the cleaned ginger under the sun – you may need to cut it into smaller pieces help it to dry faster
- You may store the ginger in solid form or grind it into powder
- Store the dried ginger (solid or ground) in a clean and dry paper bag, glass, or tin container
It’s worthy to note that the continuous use of the same piece of land to cultivate ginger may lead to low yield or production. Once you have used a particular piece of land for about two to three years for continuous ginger cultivation, take a mandatory break for a year.
However, you can use organic compost or chemical fertilizers to replenish the lost nutrients if you don’t wish to take a break.
Hopefully, this article has answered any question you may have about growing ginger.
The best fertilizer for ginger is one that is low in nitrogen and fertilizing and fertilizing your ginger is very important if you have conducted a soil test and found out that your soil is poor in nutrient.