Gadmal: An endemic pulse crop from Betul district, Madhya Pradesh, India

Tripathi, Kuldeep

Abstract

‘‘Gadmal’’ is one of the important pulse crops of the local people living in the southern parts of Betul, Madhya Pradesh, India. An expedition was undertaken in December, 2022 to gather germplasm of gadmal from Betul, a district lying almost wholly on the Satpura plateau. From the results of a structured questionnaire administered to gadmal cultivating farmers in targeted villages, it seemed that gadmal is the pulse crop cultivated in this region by tribal farmers. Gadmal is being used as split pulse, chapati and vada preparations by the farmers. The food items and recipes prepared from the gadmal are traditionally offered to tribal Gods. However, the area under this crop is shrinking due to severe infestation of yellow mosaic disease. Indian Council of Agricultural Research-National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources (ICAR-NBPGR) has collected and conserved a specimen in the National Herbarium of Cultivated Plants (Herbarium specimen, HS25749). On-spot evaluation of morphological traits was done across the locations. The study was undertaken for preliminary morphological, biochemical and molecular assessment. Based on preliminary evaluation, gadmal seems to be closer to blackgram than other cultivated Vigna species. However, detailed taxonomic studies are required to validate the identity using morpho-molecular tools. An exploratory note was presented with indigenous traditional knowledge along with cultural practices and economic uses. The work aimed to facilitate germplasm collection, detailed evaluation and systematic study of this valuable material with the prospects of crop diversification and value addition. The preliminary morphological, biochemical and molecular profiling of collected accessions being undertaken by us will provide avenues for better utilization and recognition of this crop. Efforts are being made to document the traditional knowledge and facilitate the tribal community for germplasm registration.


Keyword(s)

Collection, Endemic, Gadmal, India, Landrace, Pulse, Vigna

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