Labisia pumila has been traditionally used by the locals as protective medicine before and after childbirth. Its other medicinal uses include its use as a treatment for dysentery, flatulence, dysmenorrhoea and gonorrhoea. Today, this species is widely used in the herbal and pharmaceutical industries. This has led to the exploitation of the species in the natural forests. Unless necessary steps are taken to domesticate and cultivate them, it is anticipated that this plant species will face extinction and severe genetic loss. Besides propagation by seeds, experiments carried out in Forest Research Institute Malaysia (FRIM) have indicated that the species can be easily propagated by cuttings taken from the stem, leaf and petiole.
The results three months after planting on the rooting beds showed that the average rooting percentage obtained was 70%. The survival of rooted cuttings after potting was 80%. The results of these experiments showed that adequate and regular supply of planting stocks can be made available for planting. Domestication of this species can be implemented on a commercial basis either as single cropping or intercropped with oil palm, coconut and rubber. It was reported that one hectare of land planted with this plant can produce 2.9 tons of fresh materials after nine months of planting. These plants can also be planted on a small scale by rural communities, which can be one of their sources of income. This kind of project will create an alternative opportunity for rural employment and help to lessen urban migration among youths in the country.
|Keywords:||Propagation, Nursery Techniques, Cultivation|
Research Officer, Herbs Improvement, Forest Research Institute Malaysia, Malaysia
Senior Research Officer, Forest Nursery, Forest Research Institute Malaysia, Kepong, Selangor, Malaysia