Kodo Millet (Varagu) – Cultivation Practices

By TamilNadu Agricultural University on 15 Dec 2018 | read

Kodo millet (Varagu) – Paspalum scorbiculatum

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Package of practices for Varagu

Season And Varieties

VaraguVellore, Thiruvannamalai, Kanchipuram, Tiruvallur, Dharmapuri, Krishnagiri, Salem, Namakkal, Cuddalore, Villupuram, Tiruchirapalli, Perambalur, Karur, Thanjavur, Tiruvarur, Nagapattinam, Madurai, Dindigul, Theni and Ramanathapuram


a) June-July
b) July-August

CO 3


ParentageSelection from Georgia variety
Duration (days)120
PigmentationPurple stem
Tillering abilityHigh
PaniclesWell exposed clusters and spikelets
Grain CharacterBrown & Bold with hard seed coat
Grain Yield (kg/ha)
Rainfed1500 - 1800
Special featuresTolerant to smut, short duration

Seeds and sowing


For line planting 10 kg/ha; For sowing 12.5 kg/ha Use of Gorru or seed drill is recommended.

Seed treatment


Treat 1 kg of seeds with 2 g Thiram or Carbendazim.

Field preparation


Plough the field thoroughly using a small iron plough or country plough to fine tilth.

Fertilizer application

Apply basally FYM/Compost 12.5 t/ha; Nitrogen 44 kg/ha Phosphorus 22 kg/ha



For line planting 45 x 10 cm for sowing 10 cm in between plants



First weeding is done on the 15th DAS and the second weeding on 40th DAS



Thinning is done soon after weeding or before 20 DAS

Plant protection


Generally no major problem of pests and diseases

Post Harvest Technology


The minor millets comprise of proso millet or panivaragu (Panicum miliaceum), foxtail millet or thenai (Setariaitalica), little millet or samai (Panicum sumatrense), barnyard millet or sanwa millet (Echinochloa colona) and kodo millet or varagu (Paspalum scrobiculatum).

Minor millets are high energy, nutritious foods comparable to other cereals and some of them are even better with regard to protein and mineral content. They are particularly low in phytic acid and rich in dietary fibre, iron, calcium and B vitamins. As the millets are consumed by the poor, they guard them against food and nutritional insecurity imposed by various agronomic, socio economic and political factors. Minor millets can thus act as a shield against nutritional deficiency disorders and provide nutritional security.

Supplementation of cereal based products with millets has become increasingly popular due to nutritional and economic advantages. With proper preparation, 30 per cent of minor millets can be gainfully substituted in value added foods belonging to the categories of traditional foods, bakery products, extruded foods and allied mixes for the convenient preparation by rural and town folk at low cost. Poroso millet flour is used as a substitute for rice flour in various snack foods.

Traditionally, finger, kodo and poroso millets are brewed by tribal in certain parts of India. Popping of finger millet is done on cottage industry level and the popped meal is marketed in polyethylene pouches.


Nutritive Value of Minor Millet 

Italian millet33111124386131290 
Sanwa millet307126241065202805

 Small millets are rich in phytochemicals, including phytic acid, which is believed to lower cholesterol. Dietary fiber protects against hyperglycemia, some phenolics and tannins act as antioxidants. Small millets have potential benefits to mitigate or delay the onset of complications associated with diabetes.

Value Addition - Traditional foods   Adhirasam   Khakra Bakery Products   Bread   Rusk   Biscuits   Soup stick Instant Food Mix - Murukku Mix Extruded Products - Noodles Preparation of Supplementary Food Mix