The amla is quite a popular edible fruit in Southeast Asia. The fruits produced are sour and are used in making jams and jellies. The Amla or Phyllanthus Emblica is also known as Nelli and Emblic. It is quite an important part of the South Asian cuisine and also exhibits medicinal properties. The amla trees can grow quite easily in containers and might prove to be a very useful addition to your garden.
Sunlight, water, and good soil are the essential criteria for a healthy amla tree. The tree should also be properly fertilized to support growth.
The trees should be planted in full light. They have no qualms with full exposure to the sun and actually flourish if kept so.
The trees should be watered at least once every 2 weeks during the summer. Care should be taken that the soil is moist but not soggy.
The Amla trees prefer a rich soil with good drainage properties. The soil should be deep and not too alkaline. Loamy soil is ideal for this purpose.
In the first year of planting the plant should be given 5 ounces of granular fruit tree fertilizer twice throughout the year. In the second year, the amount should be doubled. The amount of fertilizer given to the plant should keep on increasing every year so that it gets 3 pounds of fertilizer in the 10th year. The fertilizing sessions should be scheduled such that one of the feedings occur after the blossoms fall off and the other four months after that. The fertilizer should be scratched into the ground around the tree trunk and then the plant should be watered.
If the tree is being grown from seeds then they should be soaked in water first for 12 hours. The seeds that don't sink into the water should be discarded. The container in which the plant is to be grown must be filled with equal portions of sand, compost and garden loam. The seeds should be planted at a depth of three times its diameter. The soil should be kept moist. After the planting the seeds, the container is to be covered with a plastic bag. This bag should only be opened to provide moisture to the germinating seeds.
All the weak branches of the trees should be cut off. The tips of the saplings should be snipped off when they reach a height of 3 feet.
The fruit of the amla tree is a very common part of the South Asian cuisine. The fruits and leaves also contain medicinal properties.