As demand for this is going up every year, farmers are showing interest to grow these fruits on commercial scale. There is a huge potential for Lychee growers as still has a vast untapped potential in the domestic as well as the global market.
Health Benefits of Lychee Fruit.
- Lychee fruits are good for digestion.
- Lychee fruits strengthen the immune system.
- Lychee fruits are good for blood pressure management.
- Lychee fruits boost blood circulation.
- Lychee fruits have antiviral properties.
- Lychee fruits may prevent from certain type of cancers.
- Lychee fruits have anti-influenza properties.
Climate Requirements For lychee Fruit Cultivation.
Lychee trees are very sensitive to frost and dry heat conditions and the young Lychee trees should be protected from frost and heat until they establish well-enough. The fruit yield would be more in regions where max temperature is below 40 °C in summer and below freezing in winter. Heavy rains for long periods at the time of flowering will damage the crop
Soil Requirement for Lychee Fruit Cultivation.
Well, soil type plays major role in any successful cultivation. In case of Lychee fruit cultivation, it requires well-drained deep loamy soils. The best suitable soil for Lychee fruit cultivation should have good organic matter and pH range of 5.0-7.5. Commercial growers can go for soil test to find out any nutrient and micro-nutrient deficiencies and should be acted according to soil test results.
Filed Preparation in Lychee Fruit Cultivation.
Usually, field preparation includes clearing of all weeds, vegetation and levelling. The land should be ploughed using disc followed by harrowing. As hot and dry winds in summer, cold winds in winter damage the Lychee crop, it is advised provide wind breaks. Plant any tall trees like eucalyptus at the orchard boundary. These wind break trees should be at right angle to the direction of prevailing winds.
Irrigation in Lychee Fruit Cultivation.
Irrigation at the time of planting or transplanting is required for root establishment in the soil. In summer hot months, it requires irrigation once in 8 to 10 days. In winter months, 2 to 3 irrigations at an interval of 40 to 60 days are required. Farmers can go for drip irrigation as it is best irrigating method in utilizing available water. In regions where abundant water is available, prefer basin or ring system of irrigation.
Manures and Fertilizers in Lychee Fruit Cultivation.
In any orchard, proper and timely application of manures and fertilizers should be followed as it directly impacts the crop yield and quality of produce. The amount of manures and fertilizers depends on the plant age.
Mulching in Lychee Fruit Cultivation.
Mulching is a process used for preventing evaporation of moisture from plant base. This also helps in controlling weeds and preventing from soil erosion. Finally, mulch martial (provided natural mulch material is used) can turn into organic compost after decomposition at the plant base. Mulch material like straw can be used for this purpose.
Pests and Diseases in Lychee Fruit Cultivation:- The following are the pests and diseases found in Lychee orchard.
- Insect Pests in Lychee Fruit Cultivation: Mites, Shoot borer, bark eating caterpillars, worm/fruit stone borer weevil, are the two serious pests attack the Lychee plants. Control Measures: Contact your local horticulture department for symptoms of these pests and their preventive methods.
- Diseases in Lychee Fruit Cultivation: Rot and Fruit Rot are common fungal diseases observed in Lychee fruit cultivation. Control Measures: Contact your local horticulture department for symptoms of these diseases and their preventive methods.
Harvest and Yield in Lychee Fruit Cultivation.
As Lychee tree grows for long period of time, one can observe 4 different phases of life cycle depending on the age of the plant.
- Young non-bearing stage (1-3 years).
- Young bearing stage (6-10 years).
- Junior adult bearing stage (11-20 years).
- Senior adult bearing stage (21 years and above).
Post-Harvest Tasks in Lychee Cultivation.
If the fruits are intended for local consumption, the Lychee fruits should be collected at the ripened stage and if they are for export market, the fruits should be harvested when they have started turning reddish.
- Grading: Fruits should be graded based on their size and damaged or cracked fruits should be removed.
- Storage: Lychee fruits cannot be stored for more than 2 days as they start changing the color. For better shelf life, Lychee fruits can be stored for a period of 8 to 10 weeks at the temperature of 1.6°C to 1.7°C and relative humidity ranging between 80%-90%.
- Packing: The Lychee fruits should be graded and packed in shallow baskets or crates lined with leaves of Lychee.
- Transportation: The packed fruits can be transported to local markets or whole sale agents by mini trucks.
- Marketing of Lychee Fruits: Contact any whole sale agent or commission agent or fruit processing company for bulk purchase.