1.1 Background of the Study
Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is a flowering plant whose
rhizome, ginger root or ginger, is widely used. Ginger is in the family
Zingiberaceae, to which also belong turmeric (Curcuma longa), cardamom (Elettaria
cardamomum), and galangal. Ginger originated in the Island of Southeast Asia
and was likely domesticated first by the Austronesian people. It is an
herbaceous perennial which grows as an annual pseudostems (false stems made of
the rolled base of leaves), about a meter tall and bearing narrow leaf blades.
The inflorescences are pale yellow with purple flowers and arise directly from
the rhizomes on separate shoots.
Ginger (Zingiber officinale Rosc), which originated in the
Indo-Malayan region, is now widely distributed across the tropics of Asia,
Africa, America and Australia. It was domesticated in India and China, which
represent the Centre of origin of the species. Cultivated ginger, though
sterile, exhibits variations in rhizome and vegetative characters. The crop is
gaining importance as a curative agent for a variety of ailments. Yield and
quality traits (such as essential oil, fibre and oleoresin contents) along with
volatile and non-volatile constituents are important determinants of the commodity’s
end product. Cultivar diversity for yield and morphological features is well
known in ginger with few primitive types having excellent quality.
Nigeria is currently one of the main producers of ginger in
the world and the major producers in Africa. With its annual world production
surpassing 1.5 million tons and because of the several forms in which it is
traded, Ginger is now one of the most important trade commodities in the world.
Ginger is produced in five (5) states of the federation namely, Kaduna,
Nasarawa, Benue, Niger and Gombe with Kaduna as the major producer.
Nigeria production was estimated at 110, 00 metric tonnes
(FAO, 2005) in the market. Ginger is available in various forms; Fresh Ginger,
rhizomes, powered ginger and dry ginger rhizomes etc. Out of this, 10% is
locally consumed as fresh ginger while 90% is dried primarily for export
markets. Nigeria is currently the third largest exporter of Ginger in the world
after China and India. In Nigeria, ginger is highly regarded in the international
market for its quality and high medicinal value, specifically its aroma,
pungency and high oil and Aleoresin content. Though endowed with high economic
values and usages, the production of ginger is often hindering through adopted
seed bed preparation being a rhizome and the major functional part is the
rhizome. Adequate seed bed preparation should be adopted hence the essence of
the project. Various researches have been done at the different locations to
ascertain seed bed preparation attributes towards the growth and yield of the
crops, hence the study in Obio Akpa.
Morphological Description of Ginger
Ginger, (Zingiber officinale), is an erect, herbaceous and
perennial plant in the family Zingiberaceae. It is grown for its edible rhizome
(underground stem) which is widely used as a spice and in treating various
ailment. The rhizome is brown, with a corky outer layer and pale-yellow scented
center. The above ground shoot is erect and reed-like with linear leaves that
are arranged alternately on the stem. The shoots originate from a multiple
bases and wrap around one another. The leaves can reach 7 cm in length and 1.9
cm broad. Flowering heads are borne on shorter stems and the plant produces
cone shaped, pale yellow flowers. The ginger plant can reach 0.6-1.2 m in
height and is grown as an annual plant. Ginger may also be referred to as true
ginger, stem ginger, garden ginger or root ginger and it is believed to have
originated in the Southeast Asia.
The ginger plant is an erect, perennial herb with thick,
hard, laterally compressed, often palmately branched rhizomes, covered with
small scale leaves and fine fibrous roots. The stems are erect and vertical,
generally sterile, covered with leaf sheaths, and reaches up to 1.5 m height.
Leaves are alternate, sessile, distichous, linear,
lanceolate, acuminate with lamina 15-20 cm long and 2-3 cm wide, continuing
into a transparent sheath on the stem.
1.2 Justification/Objectives of Study
Ginger is an important cash crop grown in Nigeria mainly for
its aromatic rhizome. Morphologically, Ginger (Zingiber officinale, Roscoe) is
a flowering plant whose rhizome, ginger root or ginger is widely used.
Ginger belongs to the family of zingibenceae, to which
belong trimeric (Curcuma longa), cardaarom (Elettaria cardanomium). Though, it
originated in the Island if South East Asia, it has found its use and
distribution in the tropics of Asia, Africa, America and Australia.
The crop is gaining importance as a curative agent for a
variety of ailments. Medically, the crop has been found to be
anti-inflammatory, antifungal, antivomiting, analgesic, antivlcevic etc. It has
been affirmed to be effective in gastro intestinal problems. In the food and
allied industries, ginger has been used widely in food preparation. It has often
provided the necessary spices in meals and recipes and thus a necessary item in
culinary usage. In the manufacturing sector, it is used in confectionaries,
soft drank production and in most flavouring preparations. Aside, ginger is a
major source of foreign exchange, income generators and source of employment to
Incidentally, it production has been hindered by series of
factors. Among such factors are the land preparation method (since ginger is a
rhizome), soil fertility status, husbandry practices and show related issues.
Ginger requires a good soil tilt in optimize production and
growth. Various land preparation methods are available ranging from mounds,
ridges, beds and so on. The purpose of this project therefore is to assess the
preferred land preparation method that will promote growth and subsequent yield
of the crop in Akwa Ibom State and more especially in Obio Akpa.
The objectives of the study therefore are:
i. To assess the various effect of the seed bed preparation
on the growth of ginger rhizomes.
ii. To assess the various effect of the seed bed preparation
on the yield of ginger.
iii. To compare the performances of the adopted seed bed on