This is an attractive erect rambling shrub with long tuberous roots and bright red
flowers in long terminal spikes. The root tubers are the medicinally important parts.
This is an esteemed remedy for leucoderma and other skin diseases. The synonyms
of fire like 'agnih' 'analah' etc. are attributed to this drug to indicate the caustic
action of roots causing blisters on the skin. The drug is used only after adequate
curing and purification. Roots contain plumbagin, which is responsible for the therapeutic
action of the drug.
: Mridhula and Agni
Propagated by single, double or three node semi-hard wood stem cuttings. Cuttings
are planted in nursery beds of convenient length and 1 m width for rooting.
Prepare the land to a good tilth by ploughing two or three times. Make ridges of
about 30 cm height and 50 cm apart for planting rooted cuttings. Two to three month
old rooted cuttings can be planted on the ridges at a spacing of 15 cm in June-July.
Cattle manure or compost @ 10 t/ha may be applied as basal dose at the time of land
preparation. The fertilizer dose for chethikoduveli is N:P2O5:K2O
@ 50:50:50 kg/ha. Entire P2O5 has to be applied as basal dose
and N and K2O in two split doses, 2 months and 4 months after planting.
Weeding has to be done two or three times depending on weed growth. Earthing up
may be done two times along with topdressing of fertilizers.
For controlling nematodes (Meloidogyne incognita and Radopholus similis)
associated with Chethikoduveli, apply Pseudomonas fluorescens (Pf1) @ 10g/plant
at the time of transplanting rooted cuttings.
The crop can be harvested in about 18 months after planting. After digging out,
the root tubers are cleaned by washing in water and marketed.