Spice Crops - Ginger Cultivation Practices

By TamilNadu Agricultural University on 18 Jan 2019 | read

Ginger (Zingiber officinale Rosc.)

ZingiberaceaeImage title

Rio de Janeiro, Maran Nadan, Suruchi,
Suravi, Suprabha, Himagiri,IISR Varada,
IISR Mahima and IISR Rejatha Athira
and Karthika are the popular varieties.

Varietal Selection

Indigenous collections
S.NoCultivarSpecial features
1 Assam Rhizome bold, highly flavoured, highly fibrous
2 Burdwan-1 Bold, pungent, flavoured
3 Ernad Chernad Bold, highly pungent and fibrous
4 Gurubathani Bold, highly pungent and fibrous
5 Himachal Pradesh Bold, lemon flavoured, dry ginger production
6 Nadia Slender rhizome, lemon flavoured  and less fibrous
7 Wyanad local Bold, pungent and less fibrous
8 Tura Rhizome slender, pungent, flavoured and fibrous
Varieties for Yield by Selection
S.NoCharacter / traitCultivar /accession
1 High Yield (Fresh and dry) U.p, Rio-de-genero, Thingpuri, Karakkal/ Suprabha/ Anamika
 SG-646, (Kerala), SG-666 (Himachal Paradesh)
 Maran, Nadia, Narasapattinam,Subrabha, suruchi,
 Wyanad local, Ernad chernad, wyanad, china, SG-876, SG – 882, SG 705, SG – 700
 Himgiri, IISR Varadha, IISR Rejatha, IISR Mahima
2 Bold Rhizome China , Taffingiva, Bhaise, China,Acc.Nos.117, 35, 15, 27
 Varadha, Gurubathan, SG-35
3 Slender rhizome Suruchi, Kunduli Local
4 Short duration Sierra - leone
Varieties for Quality by Selection
S.NoCharacter / traitVariety / Cultivar Accession
1 High Dry recovery Tura Local (29%), Tura –(28%), Thodupuzha (22%),Kurupppampadi (23),  Nadia (22%)
2 High Oleorsein Assam (9.3%), RIO-de-Genero (10.5%), Maran, (10%)
3 High Essential oil Mannanthody (2.2%), Karakkal(2.4%), Ellakallan (2.6%)
4 Low crude fibre China(3.4%), UP(3.7%), Nadia (3.9%)
5 High dry ginger yield (t/ha) Rio –de-genro, Maran (3.27), Thingpruri, (2.79), Maran(4.4), Nadia(3.8)
6 High Zingiberene and gingerol Bahrica and Amaravathi
7 Salted Ginger Acc.Nos. 35 & 37


May - June is highly suitable for cultivation.

Soil and climate:

A friable well drained loamy soil rich in humus with warm and humid conditions with 150 cm of annual rainfall are preferable.

This crop is grown as an irrigated crop in humid zones from sea level to an altitude of 1500 metres.

Seed rate:

1500 - 1800 kg of rhizome/ha is required.

Seed treatment: 

Treat the seed rhizomes with Mancozeb or Copper oxychloride 3 g/lit or 200 ppm Streptocycline for 30 minuteSpacing

Irrigated crop - 40 x 20 cm in ridges and furrows.

Rainfed crop - Raised beds of 20 x 20 cm or 25x 25 cm

Manures and Manuring:

Basal: FYM 25-30 t + 30 tonnes green leaves as mulch in three splits : 15 tonnes-immediately after planting, 7.5 tonnes - 60 days and 120 days after planting, 50: 25 kg of P and K per ha. 

Top dressing: 37.5: 12.5 kg of N and K per ha applied on 45th and 90th day after planting Aftercultivation.

Mulching is done at the time of planting with green leaves. After each top dressing, earth up the plants.

Image titleField preparation

Image titleGinger drip irrigation

Pest of Ginger

Shoot borer: Conogethes punctiferalis     

Symptoms of damage:
  • Yellowing and drying of leaves of infested pseudostems.
  • The presence of a bore-hole on the pseudostem through which frass is extruded and the withered and yellow central shoot

Identification of pest:

  • Egg: is pink, oval, flat and lays singly or in group on the tender part of the plant
  • Larva: is long, pale greenish with a pinkish was dorsally, head and pro-thoracic shield brown in colour and body covered with minute hairs arising on wards.
  • Pupa: Pupation takes place in lose silken coccon in larval tunnel.
  • Adult: is a medium sized moth, the wings are pale yellowish with black spots on the wings. 


  • Spraying malathion 0.1% at 30 day intervals during July to October is effective in controlling the pest infestation.
  • The spraying has to be initiated when the first symptom of pest attack is seen on the inner most leaves on the pseudostem.

Damaged leaves and larva presence on the inside stem



Leaf roller: Udaspes folus

Symptoms of damage:

  • Leaves become folded or rolled longitudinally
  • Complete defoliation
Identification of pest:
  • Larva: is smooth green with black head


  • It is brownish black butterfly
  • Forewing: has a white spots
  • Hind wing: has a large white patch


  • A spray with carbaryl (0.1%) or dimethoate (0.05%) may be undertaken when the severe infestation   
  • Spray the following dissolved in 1 lit of water, Bavisitin 2g +Mancozeb 2g + Teefol 1 ml

Image titleLeaf Spot



Rhizome scale: Aspidiella hartii

Symptoms of damage:
  • Field infestation
    • Plants look devitalized, pale and withered before drying completely.
    • In such cases at the time of harvest minute yellowish crawlers can be seen moving in large numbers and this is the potential stage of dissemination.

Identification of pest:

Storage infestation

  • In Initial stage of infestation in, the white coloured scales are seen scattered on rhizomes and latter they congregate near the growing buds.
  • When the infestation is severe the rhizome and buds shrivel and ultimately the entire rhizome dries.


  • Female: scales are circular (about 1mm diameter) and light brown to gray and appear as encrustations on the rhizomes.
  • Male is orange coloured with transparent wings, distinct head, thorax and abdomen.


  • Discard and do not store severely infested rhizomes
  • Collect and destroy damaged leaves
  • Select healthy rhizomes free from scale infestation for seed materials
  • Treat seed material with quinalphos 0.075% (for 20-30 minutes) before storage and also before sowing in case the infestation persists.
  • Apply well rotten sheep manure @ 10 t/ ha in two splits or poultry  manure in 2 splits followed by drenching dimethoate 30 EC @ 2 ml or phosalone 35 EC @  2ml /lit of water

Thrips: Panchaetothrips indicus 

Symptoms of damage:

  • Leaves become rolled up
  • Turn pale and gradually dry-up

Identification of pest:

  • Adult is with fringed wings


  • Spray insecticides like quinalphos 0.025% or phosalone 0.07%


Diseases of Ginger 

Soft rot or rhizome rot : Pythium aphanidermatum/ P. vexans / P. myriotylum
  • The infection starts at the collar region of the pseudostems and progresses upwards as well as downwards. The collar region of the affected pseudostem becomes water soaked and the rotting spreads to the rhizome resulting in soft rot.
  • At a later stage root infection is also noticed.
  • Foliar symptoms appear as light yellowing of the tips of lower leaves which gradually spreads to the leaf blades
  • In early stages of the disease, the middle portion of the leaves remain green while the margins become yellow.
  • The yellowing spreads to all leaves of the plant from the lower region upwards and is followed by drooping, withering and drying of pseudostem.


  • Treatment of seed rhizomes with mancozeb 0.3% for 30 minutes before storage and once again before planting reduces the incidence of the disease.
  • Cultural practices such as selection of well drained soils for planting is important for managing the disease, since stagnation of water predisposes the plant to infection.
  • Seed rhizomes are to be selected from disease free gardens, since the disease is also seed borne.
  • Once the disease is located in the field, removal of affected clumps and drenching the affected and surrounding beds with mancozeb 0.3% checks the spread of the disease.


Image titleCross section of rotten region

Image titleRhizome rot

Bacterial wilt: Ralstonia solanacearum


  • Water soaked spots appear at the collar region of the pseudostem and progresses upwards and downwards.
  • The first conspicuous symptom is mild drooping and curling of leaf margins of the lower leaves which spreads upwards
  • Yellowing starts from the lowermost leaves and gradually progresses to the upper leaves. In the advanced stage, the plants exhibit severe yellowing and wilting symptoms.
  • The vascular tissues of the affected pseudostems show dark streaks. The affected pseudostem and rhizome when pressed gently extrudes milky ooze from the vascular strands. 


  • The cultural practices adopted for managing soft rot are also to be adopted for bacterial wilt.
  • The seed rhizomes may be treated with streptocycline 200ppm for 30 minutes and shade dried before planting.
  • Once the disease is noticed in the field all beds should be drenched with Bordeaux mixture 1% or copper oxychloride 0.2%.


Image titleYellowing of leaves

Image titleInfected field

Leaf spot : Phyllosticta zingiberi


  • The disease starts as water soaked spot and later turns as a white spot surrounded by dark brown margins and yellow halo. The lesions enlarge and adjacent lesions coalesce to form necrotic areas.
  • The disease spreads through rain splashes during intermittent showers.
  • The incidence of the disease is severe in ginger grown under exposed conditions.
  • The disease can be controlled by spraying Copper oxychloride 0.25 % or Mancozeb 0.2%.

Image titleWater soaked spot


The crop can be harvested after 8 - 9 months when leaves start yellowing and drying.


About 12 - 15 t/ha can be obtained.

Image title


Image titleDried Ginger