Online Manual for the Forest Tree Seeds of Kerala

A Kerala Forest Department Funded Project


Dr. K Sudhakara
Professor & Head of the Department
Dept. of Silviculture & Agroforestry
College of Forestry, Kerala Agricultural University, Thrissur 680 656
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Scientific Name  Calamus rotang L.
Vernacular name  Cheruchooral (Malayalam); Sothuperumbu (Tamil) (Chacko et al., 2002).
Common name  Rattan, Cane (Chacko et al., 2002).
Synonyms 
Family  Arecaceae / Palmae
Subfamily 
Origin 
Distribution  Occurs in the coastal regions of Alappuzha and Kollam districts of Kerala and also in Sri Lanka (Renuka, 2000; Chacko et al., 2002).
Description  Armed, clustering, slender, climbing canes. Stem with sheaths measures up to 1.3 cm in diameter and without sheath up to 1 cm (Chacko et al., 2002).
Flowering season  October to December.
Fruiting season  March to April (Chacko et al., 2002).
Flowers  Unisexual, spadix very long, female scattered along the slender branches of the spadix.
Fruits  Fruits are straw yellow in colour, ovoid with scale arranged in 21 rows. Measures about 1.2-1.3 cm length (Chacko et al., 2002).
Fruit type 
Seeds  1 seeded.
Seed length 
Seed width 
Seed thickness 
Seed weight  4002 seeds/kg (Chacko et al., 2002).
Seed dispersal 
Seed Collection  Fruits are collected from plant by slowly pulling down the fruit-bearing branch (Chacko et al., 2002).
Transportation of seeds  Fruits are transported to the nursery immediately after collection. It is better to carry them as bunches in moist gunny bags (Chacko et al., 2002).
Seed processing  Fruits are de-pulped after soaking in water for 24 to 48 hrs and removing the fleshy disintegrated pericarp by rubbing between the palms. Seeds are then cleaned by washing in water several times and then stored in moist sawdust so that seeds do not dry off (Chacko et al., 2002).
Seed storage  Probably recalcitrant. Seed storage is not recommended; however, seeds can be stored in moist sawdust up to one month (Chacko et al., 2002).
Viability period  Seeds remain viable for one month (Chacko et al., 2002).
Seed emptiness  No information (Chacko et al., 2002).
Seed pre treatment  No pretreatment other than de-pulping (Chacko et al., 2002). Rubbing with sand and ash (removing outer scaly pericarp, fleshy sarcotesta and hilum) mechanically give 65% germination taking 35 days to start germination. Removal of the micropyle give 100% germination (Singh et al., 1999).
Germination type  Adjacent ligular (In this type, a short plug emerges from the seed from which roots are produced along with an erect swelling which is the first foliar organ that develops into a leaf) (Chacko et al., 2002).
Germination percentage  80 to 90 (Chacko et al., 2002).
Germination period  30 to 40 days (Chacko et al., 2002).
Nursery technique  Seeds are sown in raised nursery beds filled with soil-sand mixture (3:1). After sowing, seeds are covered with a thin layer of sawdust. Partial shade is necessary. Seedlings are potted in polythene bags during the 4-leaved stage when the seedlings attain around 3-4 cm height, ie., usually 1 to 1 1/2 months, after the date of germination (Chacko et al., 2002).
Method of propagation  By seeds and vegetative method.
Vegetative propagation 
Pests  No information (Chacko et al., 2002).
Diseases  No information (Chacko et al., 2002).
Medicinal properties  The roots are astringent, acrid, bitter, febrifuge and tonic. They are useful in vitiated conditions.
Uses  It produces excellent cane useful for basket work, chairs, mats, blinds, etc.
Wood properties 
References  Get ...
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