Curry Leaves: How to Grow, Care Tips – Easy to grow herb which is full of vitamins, iron and calcium with great flavor
The curry leaves are easy to grow trees that are native to India. It can be planted in pot as well if there is sufficient sunlight. It is added as a seasoning to the food. The strong smell and taste add flavor to the food. The leaves are also said to have medicinal properties and are used in traditional medicine to treat various skin, hair and digestive problems. They can survive in extreme conditions.
Quick Details of Curry Leaves
|Other Common Names||Curry leaf, sweet neem, kadi patta|
|Light||Bright direct light|
|Temperature||Warm climatic conditions|
|Soil||Any well-draining potting soil|
|Fertilizer||Any house plant fertilizer|
|Common Diseases||Leaf spot, aphids, mealybugs|
|Scientific name||Murraya koenigii|
Curry Leaves Buying Instructions
- Buy a bushy plant as much as possible
- Stem should be strong and thick
- Leaves should be shiny and should not have any kind of pest attack
- Do not buy very big plant unless you are not planting it in ground
Overview of Curry Leaves
They are small bushes or trees that can grow up to a height of 15-20 feet tall. They belong to the family Rutaceae. The leaves are shiny dark green colour with pinnate arrangement. The leaves are aromatic. The flowers are white in colour and produce edible berries. However, the seeds are non-edible and can be toxic. They are grown commercially.
The leaves are rich in vitamin A, B, C. they also have calcium and iron. The leaves have a distinct aroma and taste. It is also used in traditional medicine.
Usage and Advantage of Curry Leaves
- Aids weight loss.
- Helps in controlling hair fall and aids hair growth
- Helps in treating stomach ailments
- Improves eyesight
- Helps control blood sugar level.
- Heals wounds and burns
- Added in food to enhance flavor and taste.
General Care for Curry Leaves
A rich well drained soil is preferred but any potting soil can be used with some amount of compost in it.
Can be watered daily. They prefer moist soil. But care should be taken to make sure that the soil is dry before watering them. Excess watering can be harmful to the plant.
They like warm conditions and prefers direct sunlight
The curry leaves can be pruned regularly if grown in pot. If grown in ground pruning can be twice a year. Pruning helps in growth of new branches. Regular pruning of the trees and removing dead and infected leaves can prevent spread of the infection and also maintain a healthy plant.
Fertilizer for Curry Leaves
Does not require any fertilizer. However, addition of nitrogen rich fertilizer gives rich green leaves.
Pests and other problems for Curry Leaves
The smell of the curry leaves repels most of the disease-causing pathogens and pests. The plant is prone to most of the pathogen attacks. However, in severe cases it can be attacked by certain pests like aphids’ mealybugs and psyllids. This can be prevented by spraying neem oil or any pesticide on the plant.
One of the most commonly seen diseases in curry leaf is the leaf spot. It can be a bacterial or fungal leaf spot. This leads to the formation of dark spots in leaves which further spreads throughout. This can lead to falling off of leaves and thus affecting the plant health.
It can be controlled by using any fungicide.
Propagation of Curry Leaves
The propagation can be done either from the fruits or stem cuttings.
The seeds can be separated from the fruits and sown or the fruit on the whole can be buried for germination. The seed germination takes place best when fresh seeds are sown. The seeds can be collected during late summer. The soil should be damp and should be placed in a warm place. The propagation by seeds is not a preferred way because the viability of the seeds is low.
One of the most preferred ways of propagation is through stem cuttings. A 3 inch long stem is cut from a healthy branch and the leaves are removed from the bottom end. However, a set of 2-3 leaves are left undisturbed at the upper end of the cutting. The stem cutting is planted into the soil and watered thoroughly. A curry leaf stem should develop roots and start to grow within 2 weeks if placed in warm and moist conditions.