Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Turmeric - Harvest Time

December is time to harvest turmeric around these parts. These plants are apparently seasonal. Thus this is one of those crops that I can produce year around. Not that they die back because of frost. No, not that. But they must be day length sensitive, maturing and dying when the days get shorter. 

All my turmeric plants are dying back at the same time regardless of when the tubers were planted. I tried planting some early, some late. It made no difference, 

These, above, I planted on the late side. As a result the plants are smallish. But right on time the plants yellowed then died back. 

The earlier I planted the tubers, the better the plants grew and produced. And, the more fluffy and fertile the soil, the bigger the tubers grew. Plants in the shade produced far better than ones in the sun. This is definitely a crop for the shady spots. That's great because I have lots of shady areas on this farm. 

This past year I didn't plant lots of turmeric, but I am planning on dramatically increasing my production for 2017. 2016 was a year for experimenting and learning about this crop. Now, I hope to make this one of my income crops while still growing enough for friends and ourselves. Therefore I am replanting every tuber I've produced, plus several more pounds that I've purchased or had gifted to me. So if the weather cooperates and the diseases don't find it, next year should be a good harvest of turmeric. 

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