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Easily Available Soil Media for Litchi Air Layering

Easily Available Soil Media for Air Layering in Litchi

About litchi

Litchi is also spelled as lychee. It is a tropical fruit crop. The litchi is a delicious fruit and generally consumed as a table fruit. It is one of the most popular fruits of India which is commonly eaten as fresh form. The fruits of litchi comes to market in May or early June when very few other fruits are available, thus, they fetch remunerative prize in market.

Importance and uses

Litchi squash is a popular product which has a pleasant and very refreshing. The litchi nut is the dried form of the fruit. Fruits are rich source of minerals like calcium, phosphorus and vitamins.

Composition of litchi


About air layering

Air layering is also known as goottee of hawaii dab. In this method one year old, healthy and straight shoots are selected, which follows the removal of a ring bark measuring about 2.5 cm just below a bud. Generally, we use sphagnum moss as media to cover woody portion.

The best time for air layering is Last week of June to July. After a few weeks, the roots start developing. These roots are visible through the polythene covering.

Also read: Litchi Air Layering Time: Propagation Method

Steps in air layering

  • Remove a ring of bark measuring about 2.5 cm just below a bud.
  • Place sphagnum moss around this portion.
  • Cover the portion of the shoot from where the end of the ring starts.
  • Wrap it tightly with a polythene strip.
  • After a few weeks, the roots start developing.
  • Then give a half way cut to the layers on the parent branch at least 15 days prior to their permanent removal from the mother plant.
  • Remove few leaves or small shoots from the layers to keep an optimum balance of root and shoot.
  • Plant these layers in nursery in close attention.
  • You can grow these plants in the fields during the following year February or September-October.

About soil media

Soil media is a plant growing substance. It can be a pure mass of soil or mixture of soil and other substances such as Farm Yard Manure and vermicompost.

A soil media can be of following types

  • Light weight growing media
  • Heavy weight growing media
  • Soft growing media
  • Hard growing media

Which is the best soil media?

A growing media should have the following characteristics to be called as the best soil media:

  • Moisture holding capacity: It should have high moisture holding capacity. Low moisture holding capacity may lead to extra work considering water management.
  • OM: This growing media should be rich in organic matter. High organic matter promotes better root initiation.
  • Weight: The weight of growing media should be light. Thinner shoots may breakdown due to the heavy weight of media.
  • Pores: Should have more pores. More pores promotes fast root growth.

Easily available soil media


FYM stands for farm yard manure.


  • Moisture holding capacity is very good.
  • It is rich in organic matter.
  • There are more numbers of pores.

Preparation of farm yard

Required materials

  • Cow dung.
  • Agricultural wastes.


After making big pits, keep filling these pits every day with cow dung, urine and agricultural residues.


It is an organic manure. Vermicompost is prepared with the help of earth worms.


  • Moisture holding capacity is very good.
  • It is rich in organic matter.
  • There are more numbers of pores.


  • Earth worms
  • Cow dung
  • Agricultural wastes


  • Make a cement tank.
  • Fill it with one layer of cow dung, earth worms and agricultural wastes.
  • Keep necessary level of moisture.


It is clay soil. Pond soil is rich in organic matter. It has high moisture holding capacity.

How to spot best soil?

Collect soil from just above the water surface, i.e., pond-shore.


  • Moisture holding capacity is very high.
  • It is rich in organic matter.
  • Light in weight.

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