The crop prefers light shade for good growth, but shade is not absolutely necessary. Jayachandran et al. (1991) investigated the effect of shade on the yield of ginger cv. Rio de Janeiro by growing plants under no shade (open) and 25, 50, and 75 percent shade. Shade was provided by coconut leaves spread on a pandal (shelter). At harvest (8 months after planting), the fresh rhizome yield was highest under 25 percent shade and lowest under 75 percent shade (20,093 and 10,778 kg/ha, respectively). The yield under open conditions was similar to that under 50 percent shade. Dry ginger recovery was highest under 25 percent shade (2,733 kg/ha).

Screening of ginger for shade tolerance was done with six cultivars (Maran, Kurup-pampadi, Himachal, Rio de Janeiro, Nedumangad, and Amballore local) under four shade levels (0, 25, 50, and 75 percent) (George, 1992). This study confirmed the shade-loving nature of ginger, registering a significantly higher yield under different shade

Figure 5.3 Planting ginger-sprouted seed rhizome bits placed in the pits.

levels than under open, with 25 percent shade recording the highest value. The quality of ginger rhizomes improved when grown under shade. Based on the rhizome yield, the cultivars adapted to each of the shade levels were identified as Kuruppampadi and Himachal (0 percent shade), Nedumangad, Himachal, and Kuruppampadi (75 percent shade). Himachal was found to be adapted to all situations. Under natural shade of coconut, Amballore local showed better performance.

The response of ginger to different shade levels (0, 25, 50, and 75 percent) and mulching levels (7.5, 15, 22.5, and 30 t/ha) was studied by Babu (1993). The highest yield (22.8 t/ha) and dry matter production were recorded in a low-shade condition of 25 percent and at the mulch level of 30 t/ha (Table 5.3). As the performance of the crop

Figure 5.4 Beds mulched with green leaves immediately after planting.
Figure 5.5 General view of ginger plot nearing maturity.
Table 5.3 Effect of shade and mulch on mean green ginger yield (kg/ha)

Shade (%)

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