Indigo was first produced in India and is being cultivated today as a dye. The history of indigo is ancient. However, due to the suppression of the British, the cultivation of indigo in India was stopped. But even today, indigo is being made using chemical substances. At present, the demand for natural indigo is increasing in the market. Due to this, the farmers have started the production of indigo cultivation again. The Indigo plant is more beneficial for the land and makes the soil fertile.
Its plants are one to two meters high, in which the colour of the flowers coming out is purple and pink. Its plants give production for one to two years, depending on the climate. In India indigo crop is mainly grown in states like Bihar and Bengal.
Soil, Climate & Temperature
In the cultivation of indigo, sandy loam soil is required, and the land should have proper drainage. Its cultivation should not be done in waterlogged ground. The warm and temperate climate is considered appropriate for a good crop of indigo. Indigo plants need more rain because they grow well in the rainy season. Apart from this, extreme summer and winter seasons are unsuitable for its crop. Its plants need an average temperature.
Before planting indigo plants in the field, the field should be adequately prepared. First of all, deep ploughing of the area is done. After this, a small amount of old cow dung manure is applied to the area. After applying manure, ploughing is done by using a rotavator. Due to this, the compost mixes well in the soil. After the waste is combined with the ground, water is applied to the field and pulverized. After this, when the area’s soil starts appearing dry from above, the land is levelled by putting a pat in the field. Moreover, the New Holland 3230 tractor is best for completing farming tasks.
In indigo cultivation, the sowing of seeds is done by source. Its roots are planted by a drill method. Before planting the seeds in the field, rows are prepared, keeping a distance of one to one and a half feet in the area. Keep a distance of one foot between each seed in these rows. Its roots are sown in April and the rainy season in irrigated places. Due to this, the plant is ready for harvesting in less time, and the yield is also good.
Indigo plants do not require much irrigation. The sowing done in April is done before the rainy season. Its plants require two to three irrigations before the onset of rain. Only one or two irrigations are required if the seeds are planted during the rainy season. The Indigo crop is ready for harvesting in three to four months. Moreover, John Deere 5310 Tractor is another suitable tractor model for farmers.
An adequate amount of fertiliser is required while preparing the field for a good yield of indigo. After the first ploughing of the area, 8 to 10 carts of old cow dung manure are mixed in the soil. You can also use compost manure instead of natural manure. Its plants replenish nitrogen from the ground, so they do not need chemical fertilizers.
Natural method is used for weed control in indigo plants. Its plants require a maximum of two hoeing’s. Its first weeding is done after 25 days of seed sowing, and the second weeding is done at an interval of 15 to 20.
Indigo plants are ready to give production after three to four months after sowing the seeds. After which their plants can be harvested. Pruning of indigo plants can be done multiple times. To gather more than once, cut the plants before they flower. Its plants are harvested at some height from the ground. After harvesting, these plants are dried in a shady place. After this, the dried leaves are sent to be sold in the market. Finally, the leaves are threshed to extract indigo from these dried leaves.
Apart from this, indigo is also produced from its dried leaves. These green leaves are sold immediately after harvesting. But the market price of green leaves is much lower than that of dry leaves. For example, farmers of Bihar can get 7 quintals of dry leaves in one field acre, with market prices of around 50 to 60 rupees per kg. Due to this, farmer brothers can earn up to 50 thousand rupees from a one-time crop of indigo in one acre of field.