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Agali pepper:Unique High Yieldling and Disease Resistant Variety

Recenlty collected pepper from a mixed farming plantation in Palakkad district of Kerala, India is a unique and unreported in world black pepper gene pool.

Image Courtesy: Times of India

This high bulk density coupled with round, firm, bold attractive black coloured corns pepper got registration as unique variety of pepper as ‘Agali Pepper’ from The Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Authority (PPVFRA).

George Kalluvellil Varkey of Thachampara, who has 16 acres of this unique variety of pepper farm, got the registration from the Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Authority, New Delhi.

K V George, who is planting this unique variety of pepper for the last 40 years in his farm in Agali grama panchayat of Attapadi Hills,Kerala, said his pepper was not only high yielding but resistant to diseases and attack from birds.

This variety was planted by his ancestor from south Kerala during 1958-59.

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K V George’s mixed crop garden is located at 1700 feet MSL at the foot hills of the Malleswaran ranges .

Amongst the different genotypes of black pepper,Agali Pepper gives dry recovery above 46%. Fresh yield ranges from 8-10 kg vine.

The plantation spanning over 25 acres has about 20,000 vines and the farmer gets a premium price for the produce of this particular variety due to its high dry recovery and attractive corns.

Another advantage of the cultivator is its high tolerance to pests as compared to other varieties.

The plant has light purple shoot tip, semi erect lateral branches and ovate large leaves (l3.6×7.5cm) with acuminate tips .

The accession is characterised by short, straight spikes with a mean length of 8.33cm , high dry recovery(46%), medium sized, firm, round berries with attractive colour.

Runner shoots collected from the vine are rooted and established at the Indian Institute of Spices Research.

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Dry Recovery and Heat Resistant

Dry recovery is an important yield contributing trait in black pepper.
Although at the farmer’s level ,the driage is reported to be’ 50% for this cultivar, at 11 % moisture level we could get 46% dry recovery, a remarkable feat at any rate.

Reported dry recovery in black pepper ranges from 29-38 percent depending on the variety. Black pepper genotypes with dry recovery above this level is very rare.
Fruit weight (not necessarily dry weight) in black pepper is reported to be of low variability.

This new accession with unusually high dry recovery is thus a unique line which will be a source of new gene for increasing dry weight of black pepper either by direct multiplication or through breeding programs.

It also verified as heat resistant as it survives without any irrigation water in the 40-42 degree celsius temperature of Attapadi during summer.

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High Yielding

According to K V George,one kg of his pepper variety will yield half a kg of black pepper as against the 320-330 grams of other pepper varieties.

Since KV George got its Registration, He is planning to start a nursery to produce one lakh plants annually of this unique, disease-resistant and high value black gold.

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Read more about Agali Pepper :


2.Image Courtesy: Times of India

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