The leaves are bipinnate, 15 to 20 cm long with 10 to
15 pairs of pinnate leaves. Inflorescence is globular
and the flowers are white.
Subabul wood can be used for light construction,
poles, props, pulp, furniture, flooring and fuel wood.
Subabul wood is an excellent fuel wood with a specific
gravity of 0.45-0.55 and a high heating value of 4000
kcal/kg. Subabul forage has a high protein and carotene
content and pellets or cubes are internationally
marketed as animal feed.
Silviculture / Cultivation
Planting of seedlings can be done with the onset of
rains in May-June or Sept-October. Seed viability is
high, but the hard seed coat posses dormancy. To hasten
germination seeds are to be dipped in concentrated
sulfuric acid for four minutes and then washed or put in
hot water at 80ºC for four minutes. The seeds should be
sundried afterwards for about one hour before
A seed rate of 3-4 kg/ha is recommended.
Sowing is preferably done during February-March in a
nursery or in polythene bags or in situ at 2-3 cm depth.
Seedlings (1.5 to 3 months old with 6-8 leaves) are
planted in the main field. A spacing of 1 x 0.1 m is
recommended for a pure crop of fodder, 1.5 x 0.2 m for
planting in boundaries and borders of coconut gardens
and 2 x 0.2 m when raised along boundaries.
Methods of propagation for raising plantation are :
(i) Direct sowing of seeds; (ii) Bag Plantation; (iii)
Naked seedlings collected from existing plantation
The most common spacing adopted are 1.27m x 1.27m
(50” x 50”) (i.e. 6200 plants/ha); 2m x 2m (2500
Pl/ha); 3 x 1.5m (2222 plants/ha). However,
the recommended spacing is 1.5m x 1.5m (4445 Pl/ha).
Inter cultivation may not be possible from second year
Weeding / Soil working
Two weedings / soil working are required per year for
the first 3 years of sowing / planting.
Pests and diseases
Subabul generally has been free of serious insect
& diseases, but is susceptible to jumping plant lice
(psyllids) which have caused serious defoliation and
mortality in some areas. Some varieties are susceptible
to gummosis, which is most likely caused by Fusarium
or Phytophtora species. Leaf spot fungus also can
cause defoliation under wet conditions.
The cost of cultivation of Subabul in one hectare at
an espacement of 1.5mx1.5m i.e. 4445 Subabul plants per
ha has been worked out at Rs. 29489/- per ha. The
details of various items of expenditure are viz., land
preparation, digging of pits, plant and material, manure
and fertilizer, plant protection, etc. The unit
cost break up of the Subabul plantation is shown in
Yield & Rotation
Harvesting is generally done at the end of third year
or fourth year. The average yield is 70-75 ton/ha.
Farmers adopt a rotation of 3-4 yrs. Normally they
go for 3 coppice crops. During second rotation, only 2
coppice shoots are retained in each stem. The sale
price for pulpwood is about Rs. 860/ton.
The material in higher girth class is being purchased
by slate manufacturers at a rate of about Rs. 1200/- to
Rs. 1500/ton. The stumps removed from plantations after
three rotations may fetch a rate of Rs. 350/- to Rs.
400/-ton for usage as fuel wood for tobacco
The financial analysis with the above parameters of
the investment cost & yields, the BCR & IRR
works out to 2.54 & 49.97% respectively. The
detailed economics has been worked out & is shown in
Annexure - II.
Markets & Marketing
There is enormous demand for Subabul wood for pulp
(raw material) from many paper industries.
Repayment of Loan
Three years moratorium can be considered while fixing
the repayment period. The principal and interest
can be repaid in 4 years from planting as given in
Annexure - III.
Beneficiaries Contribution / Margin Money /
The beneficiaries may contribute towards down payment
ranging from 5 to 25% depending upon their category,
i.e., small and other farmers. Beneficiary’s own labour
can also be taken as his contribution towards the margin
Quantum of Refinance
The loans extended by the banks to individual farmers
and / or groups of individuals such as co-operatives
under Wasteland development projects are eligible for
refinance from NABARD up to 100%.
Rate of Interest
The rate of interest on refinance from NABARD will be
as per the circulars issued by NABARD from time to
time. The rate of interest to be charged to the
ultimate borrowers would be decided by the financing
banks. However for working out the financial viability
and bankability of the model project we have assumed the
rate of interest as 12%.
COST OF SUBABUL (LEUCAENA LEUCOCEPHALA)
CULTIVATION IN ONE HECTARE OF
ESPACEMENT: 1.5 M x 1.5
CASUALTY REPLACEMENT:20 %