1 KG Guava
Guava fruit is one of the famous tropical fruits grown across Asian countries as well as other parts of world and known as the apple of the tropics. Guava fruits are quite popular in India and south East Asia. It is said to be this fruit is native to Mexico, Central America and South America. Commercial cultivation of Guava is very much successful due to low maintenance and high yields. Guava Plants are hardy and produce good yield even with little care. The Guava plants can be grown under rainfed as well irrigated conditions in both tropical and subtropical regions. Guava fruits are grown for their excellent health benefits. Guava fruits can be consumed as raw (fresh fruits) and used in beverages, candies, ice creams, dried snacks, fruit bars and desserts. There are many improved/hybrid/commercial varieties available to specific region. Guava belongs to the family of “Myrtaceae” and genus of “Psidium”. When it comes to guava size, they range from as small as an apricot to as large as a grapefruit. Guava fruit varieties (cultivars) feature white, red, pink flesh. Commercial growers generally select cuttings/grafting for propagation as seed propagation is very slow and time consuming for getting the crop. Usually, Guava fruit measures about 5 to 10 cm in length and available in round and oval shapes depending on the species (cultivar). Now a day’s commercial growers are following high-density plantation and ultra high density plantation for higher yields in Guava fruit cultivation. Guava fruits can be grown in pots / containers, back yards, greenhouse and poly houses.
Health Benefits of Guava
- Guava is good source of vitamins and minerals. This fruit is an excellent source of vitamin ‘C’, ‘A’ and antioxidants which helps in boosting immune system.
- Guava fruit is good source of “potassium”.
- Guava fruit is low in calories and fat.
- Guava is rich source of soluble dietary fiber and hence helps in treating constipation.
- Consuming Guava fruit regularly lowers the risk of cancer.
- Guava fruits are good for Diabetic patients.
- Guava fruits help lower the levels of triglyceride’s and bad cholesterol (LDL), hence these fruits are good for heart health.
- Guava fruits improve eyesight due to vitamin ‘A’ presence.
- Guava fruits are recommended during pregnancy for folic acid, or vitamin B-9 fulfilment.
- Guava fruits are good for brain function.
- Anti-inflammatory action and a powerful antibacterial ability of Guava tree leaves help fighting against infections.
- Guava fruits aid in weight loss.
- Guava is good for preventing cough and cold.
- Guava has anti-ageing properties; hence it is good for skin.
Guava can be grown in both tropical and sub-tropical climates. These trees can be grown up to an altitude of 1500 meters above mean sea level (m.s.l). Low night temperatures in winter season ensure the best quality guava fruits. Generally, older Guava plants can tolerate high temperatures and drought conditions. However, high temperature during flowering and fruit development stage can cause fruit drop and lower the yield. It is susceptible to severe frost as it can kill the young plants. Guava crop can be cultivated under both rain-fed and irrigated conditions. When it comes to rainfall requirement for rain-fed crop, on an average 100 to 125 cm of annual rainfall is more than enough for growing Guava plants.
Being a hardy in nature, Guava plants can be grown in wide range of soils from heavy clay to very light sandy in nature. However, they require well-drained, deep loamy, friable soils for good crop yield. Avoid water logging conditions as it can cause the root rot. Soil pH of 4.5 to 7.0 is ideal for Guava Plantation. River basins are very well suited for growing Guava fruits. It is advised to go for soil test, if you are planning for commercial cultivation. Any nutrient gaps should be filled based on soil test results.
Land should be deeply ploughed, harrowed and levelled before planting. Make sure to bring the soil to fine tilth stage. Remove any weeds from previous crops and land should be prepared in such a way that any excess water should be drained out. If the soil is not fertile, supplementing the land with well decomposed farm yard manure (FMY) is recommended for required nutrients. This organic manure should be added in last plough during land preparation. Dig the pits size of 1 meter x 1 meter x 1 meter and fill the pits with surface soil mixed with farm yard manure (FMY) or 25 kg of garden compost.
Soil sterilization is also an important task which raises the soil temperature and kills many soil-borne organisms including plant pathogens and pests. This process can be achieved by both physical and chemical means. Usually, physical means include treatments with steam and solar energy where as chemical means include treatments with herbicides and fumigants. However, this can also be achieved by plastic mulch film.
Planting can be done throughout the year where proper irrigation facilities are available.
Propagation is done by seeds, cuttings, grafting and air layering. Seed propagation takes longer time; hence the most adopted propagation method in Guava cultivation is grafting and air layering.