Do you have an idea of how the herb you use commonly is cultivated and harvested before you get ahold of it? It is important for you to have a brief idea of what goes on before you are able to use the product. The Manjistha plant, popularly referred to as Indian Madder, is a herbal supplement that has a rich history in Ayurvedic medicine. Manjistha powder obtained from the plant is put to use in numerous ways in the human body. The natural herbal supplement compliments various body processes in different ways. Some of these include detoxification and waste removal, and improving immunity. The plant, which is a perennial climber, belongs to the coffee family Rubiaceae.
The plant is one of a kind since both male and female parts are contained on the same plant. The perennial climber whose roots origin can be traced back to India can grow to a height of 6 metres. Since the herbaceous plant is a climber, it requires support for efficient growth. The best soils for growth of the plant are loamy soils which are relatively rich in humus. The most ideal soils for growth of the plant are those that are a bit loose, have relative moisture and are light. With such, cultivation becomes easy even as the roots penetrate in the soils. The least advisable soils to plant the herbal crop are dense clay soils. Also, the plant becomes scorched easily when grown in very dry conditions, soil included.
The best season to harvest the roots is autumn. The plant flowers, exactly one year after it has been planted. The plants have to be at least 3 years old for the roots to give maximum benefits. It is advisable to make sure that the plants are watered adequately right before the roots are ready for harvesting. There are two options which can explored when it comes to the means of propagation i.e root cuttings or seeds. During the propagation stage, the seedlings of the Manjistha plant are pricked out when they are big enough for handling. Once division has been carried out, the firmer divisions can be transferred to permanent positions. The less steady divisions can be planted in pots first after which they can be transferred later on in the summer. Also, for proper germination, the seeds are best sown after they have ripened. A cool setting is ideal for sowing. The seedlings should be pricked when they are stable enough to be handled.
Once the Manjistha plant has grown enough and the roots have been dug up from the garden, they are thoroughly cleaned with water to get rid of all the soil and dirt on them. They are then dried and placed under a shade where they are still able to receive sunlight. In order to increase their useful life, it is advisable to maintain the moisture level of the roots at about 20%. During post-harvesting, the now hard roots are sliced into smaller pieces before they are dried. The best way to store the dried roots is in gunny bags before they can be dried. At this point, they can be ground to give rise to Manjistha powder.