Part 1: Research Report
a) Common name: Turmeric, Indian Saffron (English)
b) Scientific name: Curcuma longa
c) Characteristics of plant: Turmeric is a tropical plant, which forms many long thin rhizomes (roots) used to produce spice and dye. Cooke, T. (1908). It is a herbaceous plant, which means that leaves and stems die down in the end of the growing season. It grows over the spring and summer and dies every winter and autumn. Turmeric is also characterized by its pale, clustered flowers. Typically, it attains a height of about 1 meter or 4 feet. Its leaves are elongated, dark green, and pointed. The flower is bright yellow, 3cm long and 4cm wide. The outer skin of the plant is brownish, but its flesh is deep orange-yellow inside. Rhizomes grow in a horizontal manner. Each piece of rhizome has the ability to give a new plant. The process is called vegetative reproduction. When bruised, the Turmeric plant has a natural ability to exclude a spicy scent. The reddish-yellow flowers are arranged spirally and appear among the leaves directly rising from the rootstock. Graham, J. (1839).
d) Picture of Plant:
e) Natural habitat: Turmeric is only found in the Western and Eastern Ghats of India. India is the world’s largest producer, consumer, and exporter of turmeric. The natural habitat of turmeric the plant is in humid, tropical countries. Turmeric will grow in shade if not too dense, but it produces larger and better rhizomes in the open ground exposed to the sun. The temperature to grow turmeric should be in the range of 20-30 degrees Celsius. Rainfall of 1500 to 2250 mm per annum. The soil for growing this plant should be rich; it thrives well in a well-drained sandy loam. Turmeric cannot stand water logging or alkalinity. Turmeric is liable to be influenced by light therefore; it is usually packed in airtight tins. It should be stored in cool, dark places. Turmeric
Bibliography: http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=78 http://www.sacredearth.com/ethnobotany/plantprofiles/turmeric.php http://books.google.ca/books?id=P2ykHQi6RvMC&pg=PP6&source=gbs_selected_pages&cad=3#v=onepage&q&f=false http://www.tropical-superfoods.com/benefits-of-turmeric.html