Nutritive Value: Groundnut is an oilseed crop grown mostly for protein and fat to supplement human food. Groundnut kernel contains 10 percent water, 16 percent carbohydrates, 26 percent protein and 45 percent fats, and is a very rich source of minerals like calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, manganese and iron.
Soil and Climate: Well drained, light color, loose sandy loam and friable soil are considered best for groundnut cultivation. Soil with illdrainage and acidic or alkaline soils are unfit for cultivation of groundnuts.
Important Varieties: JL24, TAG24, TPG41 and VRI2 are important varieties of groundnut grown.
Planting and Irrigation: Groundnuts can be grown in the rainy season and the summer season. Seeds are treated with Rhizobium bio-fertilizer culture and sown at 5 to 6 cm depth in soil. Seeds are planted in pots or trays or in soil at a spacing of 30 cm between two rows and a spacing of 15 cm between two plants. The groundnut crop should be provided with irrigation to maintain an optimum moisture level in the soil. The crop must be irrigated at critical growth stages like branching, flowering and pod formation.
Plant Protection: The groundnut crop is attacked by leafeating caterpillars that can be controlled by handpicking them in small plots and by spraying neemcake extract on bigger plots.At a later stage, this crop is infected by the Leaf spot (tikka) disease, where brown to black spots occur on the leaf lamina causing severenecrosis and preventing photosynthesis by leaf lamina, leading to
reduced pod yield
Harvesting: The groundnut crop is grown for matured pods and kernels. When leaves of the plant turn yellow and start dropping after 120 to 140 days, the crop can be harvested by hand pulling at the appropriate soilmoisture level to avoid uprooting of the plant without pods. In hard soil, the pod remains in the soil and one can lose the edible part of the crop. Pods are separated from the plant,
sundried and stored in gunny bags for future use.