Melia Dubia Cultivation

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24 Carat Farmer Producer Co Ltd

Survey No. 210, New DP Road Near Sangam Hotel, Malwadi, DP Road, Pune, Maharashtra - 411028, India

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A large tree, attaining a height of 20 m. with a spreading crown and a cylindrical straight bole of 9 m. length X 1.2-1.5 m. girth found in Sikkim Himalayas, North Bengal. Upper Assam, Khasi Hills, hills of Orissa, N. Circas, Descant and Western Ghats at altitudes of 1500 – 1800 m. It grows rapidly and is used for reforestation purposes. (Troup, I 186: Burkill, II 1443: Bor, 253) and yields a useful timber.


Site Factors :-

In its natural habitat the absolute maximum shade temperature varies from 37.5–47.5 C andthe absolute minimum from 0–15 C. It does well in moist regions, with a mean annual rainfall exceeding 1000 mm. The mean relative humidity in July varies from 70–90% and in January from 50–80 %?


Topography :-

It is commonly found in the hills at elevations ranging from 600 – 1800m.


Cultivation :-

The rooted saplings are planted onset of the monsoon or during the monsoon. The suggested pit size is 2' x 2'- 0.60m Cube. Espacement of 3.5 m x 3.5 m is recommended. This will give better girth in shorter duration.


Growth Statistics :-

The growth is rapid. GAMBLES's specimens gave 8 – 12 rings/dm of radius (mean annual girthincrement 5.3 – 8 cm) for a Tamil Nadu specimen, and 28 rings/dm (mean annual girth increment 2.3 cm) for a specimen from Bengal. North Kanara in Karnataka specimen showed 12-16 rings/dm of radius (TALBOT, 1909) giving a mean annual girth increment of 4 –5.3 cm. Trees grown in the Calcutta Botanical gardens from specimen from Malbar origin are said to have reached in 7 years an average height of 14m and a girth of 112 cm at breast height. This rate of growth is equivalent to 4-rings/ dm of radius. Even in comparatively dry regions with a rainfall of 750 – 1000 mm, a height of 3 – 4.5 m is obtained in plantations, against 6-7.5 m in more favourable locations.


Physical And Mechanical Properties Of The Wood :-

The sapwood is grayish-white, usually with a yellowish cast; the ' heartwood ' is light pink to light red when first exposed, ageing to pale russet brown, subject to grey stain. It is lustrous and without characteristic odour or taste. It is very light ( approximately 0.34, weight at12 5 moisture content about 336 kg/m3), straight-grained, coarse and somewhat uneven- textured. Annual growth rings are distinct but not conspicuous and number 12-16 / dm of radius.


Seasoning And Preservation Behavior :-

The timber seasons well if the logs are converted in a green state, though if left long in the log, it is liable to develop end splitting and decoration. Like many other meliaceous timbers, it contracts very considerably across the grain while drying out. The best method of dealing with the timber is to convert the logs as soon after felling as possible and to open stack the sawn material, preferably undercover to avoid grey stain.


Present Day Uses :-

The wood is used for packing cases, cigar boxes, ceiling planks, building purposes, agricultural implements, pencils, math boxes, splints and catamarans. In Srilanka, it is employed for outriggers of boats. It is suitable for musical instruments, tea boxes and the most importantly in making plywood, as the wood is anti-termite by itself.


Why grow Melia Dubia (Kadbevu) for production of Plywood. :-

  • It is fast growing tree with life cycle of 10 to 15 years, specially suited for production of Veneers & Plywood.
  • It grows well even in rainfall areas of 25” to 35” (625mm to 875mm)
  • It grows well with irrigation even in lower rainfall areas
  • Average growth of Melia Dubia is approx 1 Cft per year per tree
  • In pure plantation growth is slightly slower, it requires space to grow. We recommend space of 15' x 15'
  • This tree grows very round and sound almost without knots
  • It branches between 15' to 25' with clear straight bole
  • Density of timber is between 0.375 to 0.45.
  • Colour is light pinkish to pinkish
  • Wood of Melia is not susceptible to insect attack
  • Timber peels well and produces clear veneer
  • Logs of 4' up in girth (40 Cms up in dia) produce excellent faces & Panel core. Quality is defect less.
  • Quality of Cross Core obtained from logs of 3' & up girth (30 Cms up dia) logs is clean almost without blemish.
  • Veneer dries well & fast thereby increasing drying capacity of veneer drier at least by 25 to 40%.
  • Veneer Bonds well, adhesion property is excellent.
  • It produces good quality light weight plywood, comparable to Okume Plywood. Okume plywood is very popular in Europe & USA and sells at premium.
  • Higher & old growth logs are sliced to produce Decorative veneers.
  • Yield from logs is high, considering Melia Dubia produces quality Veneers.


Economics Of Melia Dubia Cultivation:-

  • Preliminaries / Pitting / Farmyard manure / Planting etc. 20,000
  • Cost of 400 rooted plants: Rs.50/- each. (Ex-nursery Karnataka.) 20,000
  • Drip Irrigation 30,000

Total Expenditure for 1 year
ADD: Weeding / Watering / Manure etc until 8 years
(Per Annum x 20,000) 1,60,000

Total Cost

  • Income :(After 8 years)
  • Average yield 12 Cubic feet wood per tree X 400 trees. = 4,800 Cft
  • Realisation @ Rs. 400/ cft. X4800 = 19,20,000

Net Income: 16,90,000



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