Ploughing should be done 2–3 times to a depth of 20–25cm until the soil is brought to a fine tilth. Tannia is usually planted on ridges and spacing varies from 60cm × 60cm to 1m × 1m. In certain parts of Maharashtra, where it is raised for leaf purpose, the plants are grown on raised beds of convenient length with 1m breadth and 30cm height. Farmyard manure, well-rotten cowdung and plant residues should be applied before planting.
A dose of farmyard manure @ 20 tonnes/ha is advocated. Usually seed cormels are planted 6–7cm deep. In some places, cormels are planted with the growing bud pointing downwards. While planting the cut pieces of the main corm or suckers, it is advisable to keep the apical portion above the ground level. Planting is usually done with the onset of the rain. But, it can be planted throughout the year under irrigated condition. Spacing can be adjusted according to the availability of water supply and extent of solar radiation. A wider spacing can be adopted when it is raised as an intercrop with banana or in coconut gardens.
Manuring and fertilization
Apply 10–15 tonnes/ha of cattle manure or compost at the time of planting. Application of 80:60:80kg/ha of N:P:K is economical. Half dose of N and K and full dose of P are applied at the time of planting. Remaining dose of N and K is applied in 2 split doses, first 7–10 days after sprouting and second 1 month after first application. The N and K should be applied in shallow rings around the plant at a distance of 7–10cm from the main clump. Fertilizer requirement varies according to soil and method of planting.
The field should be always kept weed-free. Weeding and earthing-up should be done at the time of fertilizer application. When crop is grown in kitchen garden without applying any fertilizer, weeding is done especially at the early stage of plant growth. Lower leaves and petioles should be removed when they start drying. When wider spacing is followed, more number of weedings is required as the leaves take more time to cover the entire area and suppress weed growth.
Some early-maturing, local cultivars can be profitably grown in kharif season without irrigation. However, it requires moist soil conditions to provide better yield of corms and succulent leaves. It cannot withstand waterlogging. During summer and drought periods, it is essential to give 5–6 shallow irrigations to maintain soil moisture.