Pandu Sastry Kakaraparthi1*, Priyanka Muthe2, Dharmendra Kumar Rajput1 and Niranjan Kumar Arigari1
1CSIR-Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CSIR-CIMAP), Research Centre, Boduppal,
Hyderabad-500092, Andhra Pradesh, India
2 School of Biotechnology, Vignan University, Vadlamudi, Guntur. Andhra Pradesh, India
Abstract: The essential oil obtained from lemongrass (Cymbopogon flexuosus) is an industrially important essential oil being used widely for the isolation of citral which can be converted into ionones. Improving the economic yield of the aromatic grass lemongrass is part of the rural development mandate of Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CSIR-CIMAP). Salt affected soils occupy wideregions scattered all over the world and India has considerable salt-affected soils. The experiment was conducted on a red sandy loam soil at the research farm of CSIR-CIMAP, Hyderabad, India with five levels of gypsum as treatments(0-4 tons/ha).The soils of the experimental site are on the leeward side of an industrial area and the ground water has become saline due to industrial effluents. A field experiment was initiated to study the influence of gypsum in soil remediation and its influence on the growth and herb yield of lemongrass. Due to application of four tons of gypsum /ha a progressive decrease in the soil pH was observed and soil pH also decreased with advancement in time and it decreased from 7.73 to 7.40 at 120 days after planting due to gypsum application. EC increased progressively in all the treatments with time. The increase was less due to gypsum treatments. Similar trend was noticed in case of bicarbonate content of the soil and carbonates were absent in the soil. Gypsum application resulted in increased herb and essential oil yield of lemongrass due to better growth of plants(plant height, number of leaves /plant , number of tillers / clump and weight of plant / clump) and the optimum dose of gypsum required is four tons/ha.
Key words: lemongrass herb, essential oil , gypsum Citral, ,ionones