Horticulture :: Medicinal Crops :: Senna

Senna - Cassia angustifolia Vahl.

Economic parts- Leaves and pods
Major constituents- Sennoside A, B, C, D

KKM (Se) 1, ALFT-2, Sona are suitable varieties for cultivation. KKM (Se) 1 is suitable for cultivation under rainfed conditions in Tirunelveli and Tuticorin regions.

Soil and climate
In Tamil Nadu, it is grown in well drained sandy or sandy loam or laterite soils.  It is a hardy warm weather crop grown under rainfed and irrigated conditions. The soil pH suited for cultivation is 7.0 – 8.5.

Seed rate
About 15 - 20 kg/ha of seed is required. The seeds are scarified with sand or can be soaked overnight in water and sown in beds at a spacing 45 x 30 cm during February – March or June – July.

Field view

The planting spreads from February - March and June - July.

Apply FYM 10 - 15 t/ha and N, P and K at 40:40:40 kg/ha as basal. Apply 40 kg N at 40 days after sowing.

Vegetative stage

Flowering stage

Pod setting stage

One or two weedings is required.

Plant protection
Spray dimethoate 30 EC or methyl demeton 25 EC at 1 ml/lit of water to control the pest.

Leaf spot
It can be controlled by spraying 0.50 % of Carbendazim at fortnight intervals

Damping off
It can be controlled by seed treatment with Carbendazim (1 g/kg of seed)

The first harvest of leaves and pods are done at 2 months after sowing and subsequent harvests at 30 days interval.  Leaves and pods are dried for 7 - 10 days.

Harvested and cleaned pods

Packing of Senna pods

Post harvest handling
Harvested leaves and pods are spreaded in a ventilated room until it reaches 10 % moisture. Sun drying is avoided to prevent the loss of Sennosides.



In the market, three or four grades of senna are recognised based upon size and colour

Grade A / first grade: The extra large and bold leaves and pods having yellowish green colour

Grade B /second grade: Produce having brownish leaves and pods

Grade C /lower grade: Smaller and broken leaves and pods

Dried leaves  :           2 t/ha.
Dried pod     :           150 - 200 kg/ha.

Dried leaves  :           1 t/ha.
Dried pods    :           75 - 100 kg/ha.


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