Cultivation of Fruits
Aonla or Indian gooseberry (Emblica officinalis) is an indigenous fruit to Indian subcontinent. Owing to hardy nature, suitability to various waste-lands, high productivity/unit area (15–20t/ha), nutritive and therapeutic value aonla have become an important fruit.
Its fruits are a rich source of vitamin ‘C’. Aonla fruit is highly valued among indigenous medicines. It is acrid, cooling, refrigerant, diuretic and laxative. Dried fruits have been reported to be useful in haemorrhages, diarrhoea, dysentery, anaemia, jaundice, dyspepsia and cough. Trifla and chavanprash are well-known indigenous medicines in Ayurvedic system using aonla. Besides fruits, leaves, bark and even seeds are being used for various purposes.
Its cultivation is common in India, particularly in Uttar Pradesh comprising Pratapgarh, Rai Bareilly, Varanasi, Jaunpur, Sultanpur, Kanpur, Agra and Mathura. Its intensive plantation is being done in the salt-affected areas of Uttar Pradesh, including ravinous areas in Agra, Mathura, Etawah, Fatehpur and semi-arid tract of Bundelkhand. Aonla cultivation is also spreading rapidly in the semi-arid regions of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Aravali ranges in Haryana and Kandi area in Punjab, Himachal Pradesh extending to Ghar area in Uttar Pradesh.
Climate and soil
Aonla is a subtropical plant and prefers dry subtropical climate. Heavy frost during winter is not conducive to its cultivation. A mature aonla tree can tolerate freezing as well as high temperature of 46°C. Warm temperature seems conducive for the initiation of floral buds. Ample humidity is essential for initiation of fruit growth of dormant fruitlets during July–August. Dry spells result in heavy dropping and delay in initiation of fruit growth.
Since aonla is a hardy plant, it can be successfully grown in variable soil conditions. The deep root system, reduced foliage, dormancy of fertilized fruitlets (April–June) makes aonla an ideal