Climatic Information for Celery Farming.
A cool and humid climate is good for celery farming. The moderate and well-distributed rain of favorable for better growth especially during the vegetative phase. It can be grown successfully under dry condition having irrigation facilities. Dry weather at maturity is ideal for a seed crop. The optimum temperature for growth is 15-21 degree Celsius. Which the temperature of the soil goes above 25 degree Celsius, then the seeds become dormant, it is called thermo-dormancy.
Temperature below 15 degree Celsius for 10 days causes bolting whereas, high temperature causes bitterness in the leaves.
Suitable Soil Celery Farming.
Celery needs deep, well-drained loamy soil with sufficient humus. It is slightly sensitive to acidic soils. The optimum pH is 6.5.
Recommended Sowing Time for Celery Farming.
The sowing is done is August – September in plains and lower hills. In temperature regions, the crops are sown in August – September and March – April.
Land preparation for Celery Farming.
The field should be ploughed thoroughly 3-4 times to make the soil friable. The topsoil should be pulverized and properly levelled by planking.
Nursery Raising for Celery Farming.
Nursery soil should be thoroughly ploughed to make it friable. Prepare 5-10 m long, 1 m wide and 15 cm high beds. Mix FYM @10kg/m2 in beds and sterilize the nursery beds 10 -15 days before sowing with 1% formaldehyde solution. After drenching cover the beds with alkathene sheets for 3-5 days, then dug the beds and left open for 5-6 days to avoid the toxic effect of formalin. The overnight soaking of seeds in water is allowed prior to sowing to hasten germination. Sow the seeds 1-1.5 cm deep in rows spaced at 5-10 cm apart and cover with fine soil. Irrigation should be done immediately after sowing. Germination takes 20-25 days after sowing. The seedlings should be hardened by withholding irrigation before transplanting to obtain a better crop stand.
Transplanting methods after Nursery.
Seedling becomes ready for transplanting within 40-60 days when they attend the height of 8 – 10 cm. They are transplanted in the well-prepared field at the spacing of 60 x 10-20cm. In the case of a direct sown crop, proper spacing is maintained by thinning.
Irrigation Requirements for Celery Farming.
Being a shallow-rooted and moisture-loving crop it required frequent irrigation. Light irrigation should be done at 7 - 10 days interval dispensing upon weather conditions. Provision for proper drainage should be made to avoid water stagnation.
Fertilizer Requirement for Celery Farming.
Incorporate 250-300 q FYM, 150 kg N, 80 Kg P and 60 kg S. Apply full doses of S and P and half dose of N as basal before transplanting. The remaining half dose of N should be given in two or three splits at 40, 80 and 120 days after transplanting.
Calcium, magnesium and boron play an important role to raise a healthy crop. The deficiency of these elements leads to various disorder in celery. Calcium deficiency causes a “black heart” in which tips of the young leaves burn. Spray 0.5% solution of calcium nitrate or calcium chloride to overcome the deficiency of calcium. The deficiency of magnesium results in chlorosis and can be prevented by soil application of magnesium sulphate @ 12 kg/ha. cracking of steam takes place due to boron deficiency which is corrected with borax @12 kg/ha, apply as a solution near the base of the plants.
Seed requirements for Celery Farming.
About 200-250 g seed is required for raising seedlings for one hectare. Direct sowing required more seeds.
Inter - Culture and weed control.
Timely hoeing and weeding are essential to raising a healthy crop. The two to three light hoeing are sufficient. During hoeing lateral shoots also be removed as and when they emerge. Two hand weddings and pre-planting application of Fluchloralin @1-1.25 kg/ha or Linuron @ 2 kg/ha effectively control the weeds.
Best Varieties for Celery Farming.
Varieties are mainly of two types i,e. self - blanching or yellow and green leaves. Green varieties are rich in vitamins A whereas, self-blanching or yellow varieties have less vitamin A content. The demand for self- blanched varieties is decreasing continuously dues to low vitamin A content.
Self - Branching -
Fluoride Gaint, Supreme Golden, Cornell-19, Cornell-619, Golden self-Blanching and Golden No. 15.
Green Branching -
Wright’s Grove Gaint, Fordhook, Standard Bearer.
Best Practices for Celery Farming.
Blanching is the process of excluding light from leaf stalk which checks the development of chlorophyll. The main object of blanching is to make the crop crisp, reduce acrid flavor and improves flavor, tenderness and quality of crops.
Celery is harvested at different stages of plant growth. The side suckers are harvested when the plants attain a height of 40 cm. Generally, tender leaves along with stalks are harvested within 80-90 days after transplanting. The average yield of tender leaves varies from 300- 400 q/ha.