Turnip Cultivation In India; A Complete Information Guide

A Full Guide of information About Turnip Cultivation In  India;

Turnip or white turnip (Brassica rapa L. Family ) belongs to the family  Cruciferae. It is a popular root vegetable of temperate climates and is grown as winter vegetables in the North-Western states of India. Small tender varieties are used as salad, cooked, or pickled. while larger varieties are cultivated for feeding green fodder for cattle. Bailey (1963) reported that the original home of this species is unknown, but it is almost certainly of European or Asian origin.

Nutritive Value value of Turnip

The nutritive value of turnip in 100 gm of an edible portion is given below: 
 Moisture = 91.6 gms, Protein = 0.2  gms ,Minerals = 0.6 gms Fibre = 0.9 gms , Other Carbohydrate = 6.2 , Calories  29 Calcium  30.0 Phosphorus = 40.0 ,Iron = 0.4 , Riboflavin = 0.04, Nicotinic acid = 0.50 (In green leaf : 5.4 mg) Vitamin-A = Nil  (Green leaves contain 15,600 LU.) Vitamin-C = 43.0 mg (Green leaves : 180.0 mg)

Climatic Requirement for Turnip Cultivation 

Turnip is a cool-weather crop and thrives best in a cool moist climate. In hot weather or when growth is slow due to water scarcity etc. the turnip quickly! becomes woody and bitter. It is highly resistant to frost.

 Soil and its preparation for the cultivation of Turnip

Turnip can grow on a variety of soil. But sandy soil is most suitable for the production of the best quality roots. Turnip requires well-pulverized soil. The soil is brought to a fine tilth by giving 6-8 ploughings followed by planking after each ploughing. 

Varieties of Turnip

Basically, Turnip is divided into major two groups ; 
1) Aseatic Type (Tropical Type);  Asiatic types are more pungent and better for pickles, earlier & more heat-tolerant  Examples of these kinds of varieties are; Pusa Kanchan, Pusa Sweti, Punjab Safed 4
2) European Type (Temperate Type ); European types of  turnip are Sweeter and more palatable Examples of these kinds of varieties are; Purple Top White Globe, Golden Ball, Snow Ball, Early Milan Red Top, Pusa Chandrima, Pusa Swarnima
The major recommended varieties are ;

Early Milan Red Top; The roots of this variety are deep flat with a purplish-red top and white underneath. The flesh is pure white, well grained, crisp, and mildly pungent. The top is very small with 4–6 sessile leaves. It is an extra early and very high yielding variety. 

Golden Ball;  The roots of this variety are perfectly globe-shaped, medium-sized, and smooth. Golden ball has a bright, creamy yellowish skin color and Its flesh is pale amber-colored with a fine texture and flavor. The top of the golden wall is small, erect with cut leaves.
Punjab Safed 4;  It is an early maturing variety,  most commonly grown in the states of   Punjab and Haryana. PS-4 roots are purely white, round, medium-sized with a mild taste.

Purple Top White Globe; This variety is a high-yielder and one of the very large-rooted varieties. Its roots of this variety are nearly round, the upper part of this variety is purplish, While the lower portion is creamy. The flesh of this variety absolutely white with a firm crispy, and mildly sweet flavor. The top is small, erect with cut leaves. It is suitable for growing during the winter months. 

Pusa Chandrima; Its roots are medium to large, nearly flattened globe to globular, smooth, pure white skin with fine grains. The flesh is sweet and tender. Top medium and leaves not so deeply cut. It is an early maturing (50–60 days), heavy cropper with an average yield of 400q/ha. It is suitable for sowing from October to December in plains. 
Pusa Kanchan; Pusa Kanchan is a pure selection from the cross of Asiatic (Local Red Round) and European (Golden Ball) varieties. This variety contains good qualities of both the parents. The roots of this variety look just like the Local Red Round. The skin is red, the flesh is creamish- yellow with an ultimate flavor and lovely in taste. The leaf top is shorter than the Local Red Round. Pusa Kanchan can be harvested about 10 days later than the local parent. The roots of Pusa kanchan can be kept for a longer time than the Local Red Round in the field without becoming to be spongy. 
Pusa Swarnima; The roots of Pusa Swarnima are flattish round with creamish-yellow skin and pale amber-colored flesh of fine texture and flavor. The top of this variety is medium and the leaf blade is not so deeply cut. This variety is suitable for growing from June to October in hills and October to December in plains. It matures in 65–70 days. 
Pusa Sweti;  Pusa Sweti has attractive white roots Pusa Sweti takes 45–50 after the sowing for its maturity. Pusa sweti is  very early maturing type of variety, it is well suited for October sowing in plains. 
Snow Ball; This variety is an early temperate type with a medium-sized small top. The leaves of this variety are erect, cut, and medium green and the roots of snow ball are round, smooth with pure white skin. Snowball flesh is white, fine-grained, sweet, and tender.

Sowing of  Turnip Seeds

(a) Sowing time. Sowing time varies according to the region and variety. 

Sowing of turnip in  hill  region; sowing Indian varieties and European varieties should be done from  March end to Mid May
Sowing of turnip in plains;  Indian varieties sowing  should be done in the month of July to September while European varieties sowing should be done in the month of October to December
(b) Seed rate. The seed rate is 1.20 to 1.60 kg per acre.
(c) Method of sowing. The seed is sown broadcasted or in lines 30-40 cm apart. The seed sown by broadcast is better, but this method gives a better result when the soil posses enough moisture, very thoroughly tilled beforehand, and is free from weeds since subsequent tillage is impossible.

Manuring in Turnip Cultivation ;

Turnip requires about 40 kg of Nitrogen, 20 kg of Phosphoric acid, and 20 kg of Potassium per acre.  application of 24 kg per acre each of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium in addition to a basal dressing of 12 tonnes FY.M. per acre increased the yield of the turnip. The placement of N, P, and K mixture either below or at the sides was superior to broadcasting,

 Intercultural Operation in Turnip cultivation

One or two hoeings and weeding may be done. Thinning in thick sown plants should be done at the time of the second weedling. The crop is earthed up for better quality roots a few days after thinning  Suitable herbicide may be applied immediately after sowing gave good control of annual and biennial weeds in the turnip.
 Irrigation should be given according to the season and to the demand of the crop. Generally, irrigations are given at an interval of 3 to 6 days in summer and 10 to 12 days in winter. The quality of cooked turnip was affected only by watering treatment which was applied in four weeks preceding harvest.
When the roots of turnip are 5 to 7.5 cm in diameter, they may be harvested. Under the late harvesting, the roots become hard and fibrous and deteriorate rapidly in quality. The method of pulling is very important factor in the self-life of the packed turnip when smooth-surfaced tuber lasted much longer than abrasion pelled tuber ones.
Turnip can be stored normally for 2 to 3 days under cool and moist conditions. The most suitable temperature range for turnip storage is 22.7°C to 23.9°C. Application of M.H. to plant before harvest prevents sprouting during storage. 
The yield of Turnip ;
The yield varies from 80 to 120 quintal per acre. 

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