Agarwood Plant Cultivation and Production Process - A Complete Guide

Known as the Woods of God, Agarwood is a highly aromatic wood sourced from the mold infected Aquilaria tree. The oil obtained from the resin of the infected tree is valuable and priced really high. Twenty-one different types of Aquilaria have been identified growing in the wild and some of these are now cultivated in farms.

Cultivating agarwood trees is a lucrative business, as the wood from the plants fetches a good price. However, if you are planning to do Agarwood plantations in Kerala, then you should do some research on the basic requirements like specific soil, climatic conditions and other factors for the better growth of the wood.

Type of Soil and Climate for Agarwood Farming

The agarwood plantations do well in hilly terrains, and an elevation of 750mtrs above sea level is considered perfect for the plants to thrive. They grow well in red, yellow podzolic, clay sandy soil and survive in regions receiving a copious amount of annual rainfall, measuring between 2000-4000mm. The ideal temperatures in which to grow these trees varies between 20°-33° C, with considerably high humidity levels of 77-85%.
Some cultivators have had success in growing Agarwood trees at lower elevations at 200mtrs above sea level, in slightly varying environments. So, the trees are sustainable, though there is still scope for research to determine optimum ecological influences for the production of Agarwood.


Plantation of Agarwood

In a natural environment, under natural conditions, a tree takes decades to reach its prime, but this whole process can be reduced to a fraction through the intervention of technology. Artificial inoculation shortens the period drastically, and agarwood is ready for harvesting in record time.

Aquilaria Saplings

Not all Aquilaria saplings grow to be mature trees and give agarwood. Therefore, it makes sense to plant more saplings so that more trees survive, which can then be artificially inoculated and more agarwood obtained.
The propagation of the seed is a delicate process that requires precision and knowledge. The seed of the Aquilaria tree must be fully mature and gathered as soon as it bursts, as they spoil easily. Suitable planning, supervision and storing facilities must be available to produce Aquilaria saplings.

Artificial Inoculation and Agarwood Farming

Artificial inoculation is the key to agarwood farming. The right techniques, when applied ensure the production of high-quality of agarwood. The inoculation involves infecting the tree with fungal inoculation. No chemicals are used in the process.
The right way to do it is to induce fungi into the xylem of the Aquilaria plant. And in a matter of hours, the inducer spreads to all parts of the tree, causing wounds on the tree, which in turn produce resin, which makes agarwood.
The resinous wood on the Aquilaria plant can take up to four months to manifest. The resin develops on all parts of the tree, from the trunk down to the roots and up through the canopy of its branches.

agarwood-seed

Soil Preparation and Planting of the Aquilaria Saplings

A thorough analysis of the land is required before planting Aquilaria saplings. There have been reports of 3-4-year-old trees dying due to water stagnation. The trees should be planted on land that has a natural slope, such as a hilly terrain, where the scope of water stagnation is reduced.
Saplings must be allowed to grow to a height of 60-90 centimeters before they are planted into the ground. Saplings are to be grown in big enough bags, to prevent coiling of the root system. The bags should be large enough to support the saplings root system, having enough space for the roots to spread out. Saplings grown in confined spaces do not survive, as the root become coiled.

Techniques for Better Survival

The Aquilaria saplings need special care to grow into healthy treed. Saplings must be planted in holes measuring approximately 40x40x40 centimeters. Coco peat must be added to the pit, to increase oxygenation of the soil. The plant does well with a feed of Phosphate and Di-Ammonium Phosphate, in regulated quantities. Too many minerals will cause the roots to burn and kill the plant, so care must be taken when applying these chemicals.

Additionally, organic fertilizer made from cow dung manure may also be added to provide the plant proper nutrition. Application of Funadan (pesticide) to the soil, is recommended to thwart pest infestation. If you care and maintain properly, investing in Agarwood plantation is as lucrative as any other business because of the extreme rarity and scarcity of the plant.

Also Read: Amazing Benefits of Agarwood Essential Oil Everyone Must Know


Comments

Author: Umesh05 Aug 2019 Member Level: Platinum   Points : 4

The author has given a detailed overview of the cultivation of this important costly plant. A well-written article on Agarwood and its farming.

Agarwood tree resin is known as liquid gold also and this precious wood and its oil are mentioned in many medical scriptures in different cultures. The fragrance of burning Agarwood is supposed to be a divine thing in many countries. It is said that the French king Louis XIV used to get his clothes cleaned in the Agarwood oil mixed water to get this pleasing fragrance for rejuvenating himself. The earliest use of Agarwood is documented as that of in 3rd century AD. The Agarwood resin oil is used in certain ailments and has medicinal value. Being a costly item it makes sense in planting this tree in the favourable lands and climate. It is certainly a viable business option.



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