The following is all about Mosambi Cultivation (Sweet Lime), Cost and Profits.
Introduction To Mosambi Cultivation
Mosambi fetching excellent yields under ideal cultivation practices. Mosambi belongs to the family of “Rutaceae” and is the 3rd largest fruits produced in India. Mosambi is a small tree which can reach a height up to 20 to 25 feet. This tree has irregular branches and relatively smooth, brownish-grey bark. Mosambi has lots of and leaves of Mosambi are compound, with acuminate leaflets 6 to 17 cm long and 3 to 8 cm wide. Mosambi flowers are white with excellent fragrance. Usually, Mosambi fruits are green an and become light yellowish on ripening.
Scientific / Botanical Name of Mosambi
• Citrus limetta.
Mosambi Common Names
• Sweet lime.
• Sweet lemon.
• Sweet limetta.
• Mosambi in Indian Languages
• Mosambi/मोसंबी : Hindi.
• Battayi: Telugu.
• Mosambi : Marathi
Climate for Mosambi Cultivation
For commercial Mosambi cultivation, a dry climatic condition with about 60 to 75 cm of rainfall from June to September is required. It also needs a well-defined summer and winter seasons.
Soil Requirement for Mosambi Cultivation
Mosambi plants thrive well in well-drained red soils or loamy soils. The soil pH should be between 6.5 to 7.5 for its optimal growth and higher yields. If you are planning to cultivate Mosambi on large scale, a soil test should be carried out. Mosambi plants are sensitive to waterlogging hence well-drainage should be provided otherwise root rot will kill these plants.
Propagation in Mosambi Cultivation-
Propagation of Mosambi is done by budding (budded plants). Nursery raised rootstock is transplanted in the main field.
Planting Season for Mosambi Cultivation-
The time of planting of Mosambi depends on region and climate. Usually, in south India, Mosambi is planted from October end to January.
Land Preparation, Planting and Spacing in Mosambi Cultivation-
The field should be prepared well by giving a couple of ploughings. Land should be levelled and brought to fine tilth stage. Any weeds and rocks should be removed as part of land preparation. Pits should be prepared with a dimension of 3 feet x 3 feet x 3 feet (Width x Length x Depth). The pit-to-pit or plant-to-plant distance should 20 to 22 feet. A row-to-row distance of 20 to 22 feet should be maintained. It is recommended to expose these pots for sun couple of weeks before actual planting starts. This can comfortably accommodate a plant density of 85 to 90 plants. High-density planting of Mosambi is possible in hilly areas. It is better to plant good distances as these trees go very big and occupy good radius.You should purchase a high quality, disease-free Mosambi plants from certified nurseries to transplant in your prepared field. These seedling/saplings should be at least 2 years of age (grown in nursery beds, usually Rootstock is raised in nurseries).Place the saplings at the center of the pits and cover with topsoil. Irrigate the plant base immediately.
Irrigation in Mosambi Cultivation
Immediately after planting the saplings of Mosambi, watering should be done for proper root establishments. The frequency of irrigation depends on climate and variety and soil type. The Rangapur Mosambi variety is little tolerant to drought conditions can survive even if you provide irrigation than recommended intervals. Usually, you should ensure soil moisture at the plant base. Mosambi garden does not require any water in monsoon season, however, in winter, irrigation should be carried out for every 3 to 4 days and in summer every alternate day. Avoid too much of watering as these pants cannot tolerate waterlogging. Most of the commercial Mosambi farmers adopt a drip irrigation system for best yields and plant growth. You can get a subsidy for drip system from local horticulture department.
Pruning in Mosambi Cultivation-
Pruning is a process of removing unwanted leaves/branches/stems. Pruning of Mosambi has to be done for straight growth and to form a strong framework of the plant. Pruning is done to encourage new growth. For proper growth of trunk, Remove the shoots in 50 cm to 60 cm near ground level. Centre of Mosambi plant should remain open. Make sure to remove water suckers at early stages of plant growth.
Manures and Fertilizers in Mosambi Cultivation
Nitrogen should be applied in 2 doses during March and October. However Farm yard manure like cow dung, Phosphorous and Potash should be applied in the month of October.
Manures and Fertilizers I year(kg)/plant Annual increase(kg)/plant From 6th year (kg)/plant
Well decomposed farmyard manure (FYM) 10 5 30
N (Nitrogen) 0.2 0.1 0.6
P2O5 (phosphorus) 0.1 0.025 0.2
K2O (Potash) 0.1 0 0.040 0.3
Manures should be applied in the basin 75 cm away from the trunk and incorporated in the soil. Solution containing Sulphate of Zinc (0.5%), Iron (0.25%), Magnesium (0.5%), Manganese (0.05%), Boron (0.1%) and Molybdenum (0.003%) should be sprayed once in 90 days at the time of new flush production. In addition to that apply 50 grams in each of Sulphate of Zinc, Manganese and Iron/tree/ year.
Intercultural Operations in Mosambi Cultivation-
Weed control: It is always advised to have a weed-free field. Manual weeding at plant base and shallow cultivation between rows for every 4 months should be carried out. There are many herbicides are also available to effectively control the weeds in Mosambi cultivation. You can use glyphosate at the rate of 1.6 liter/150 liters of water. Use glyphosate only on weeds, not on Mosambi plants.
Mulching: You can mulch the plants for controlling soil temperatures which save the water from evaporation. You can use plastic mulch materials available in the market.
Intercrops: You can utilize interspaces of Mosambi orchard for growing nitrogen-fixing crops until the plants start flowering during initial 3 years of plantation. Green gram, black gram or any other legume crops, groundnut, vegetables like beans can be cultivated.
Pest and Diseases in Mosambi / Plant Care of Mosambi
Mosambi plants are prone to pests and diseases.
Pests: Leaf miner, Citrus Psylla, Scale Insects and Aphids and Mealy Bugs are common pests found in Mosambi cultivation. For symptoms and control measures, contact local horticulture department.
Diseases: Citrus / Mosambi Canker, Gummosis, Powdery mildew, Black Spot, Zinc Deficiency and Iron deficiency are common diseases found in Mosambi cultivation. For symptoms of these diseases and control measures, contact your local horticulture professional.
Harvesting in Mosambi Cultivation-
Mosambi plants start flowering after 3 years of plantation. You should remove this flowering for better and string fruiting for next year. You can start getting yield from the 4th year of planting. You can manually harvest by using any sharp sickle. You can get two harvests in a year one in April to May and other is in August to September. Usually, Mosambi fruit turn green to light yellowish color on maturity. Don’t allow fruits to ripen fully on the tree.
Yield in Mosambi Cultivation-
The yield of Mosambi crop depends on soil type, variety, irrigation, plant age, season and other crop management practices. You can get crop 2 times in a year (April- May, and August-September). You can expect commercial yield only after the 4th year of plantation. during initial years you can get 60 kg/plant or 5 tonnes/acre. After the 5th year, yield increases to 100 kg/plant or 9 tonnes /acre. You can expect peak (maximum) yields in 10-year-old plantations. The economical lifespan of Mosambi is about 20 years. During last year’s, you can observe reduced yields.
Harvesting in Mosambi Cultivation-
Harvested Mosambi fruits should be cleaned, graded (on size and color) and packed to transport to local fruit markets. Sometimes, you can find fruit selling agents who can buy in bulk at the farm gate.
Cost and Profits in Mosambi Cultivation-
When it comes to the economics of Mosambi cultivation, profits always depends on market demand and yielding time. Especially who gets the early crop, they can get good profits.
Now Let us calculate 1 acres Mosambi cultivation cost and profits.
Land: 1 acres (Own) with drip system.
Plant age: 30 years (after planting in the field). (Note the crop yield doubles as plant grows further).
• For 1 acre plantation/year = planting material + plantation expenses + fertilizers/manures + Other maintenance expenses = Rs 50, 000.
• Total expenses for 1 acres of Mosambi (A) = 1 x Rs 50,000 = Rs 50,000
• Yield/acre /year = Number of plants/acre x Fruits weight/plant = 250 x 50= 12500kg
• Market cost of Mosambi =30 rs/Per kg
• Total Income /acre/year =12500 x Rs.30 = Rs 375,000
• Net profit from 1 acres of Mosambi cultivation / year = Total Income (B) – Total expenses (A) = Rs 375,000– Rs 50,000 = Rs 325,000 /per year
Note: After 5th year, you can expect fruits of 100kg/plant.
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