Frequently Asked Questions
‘Sunshine’ Vetiver was originally received from the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) in Griffin, Georgia. Among its most useful applications, Vetiver is used in Prevention and Treatment of Contaminated Water & Land, Soil Erosion Control, Slope Protection, etc. It is drought tolerant, wind resistant, and will grow in unfertile soil and rocky areas. The benefits of using Sunshine Vetiver are unmatched and you will be satisfied with what it can do for you. Find out more @ www.vetiver.org
- Vetiver needs full sunlight and will not grow properly if shaded, hence the name.
- Measure the distance that you plan to plant Sunshine Vetiver.
- Plantings are recommended at 3 inches apart (4 slips per foot). I recommend purchasing 5% more than the recommended planting, because often times a few need to be replaced.
- You are going to need approximately one 5gal bucket or tub per 50 slips.
- Put Vetiver upright in a bucket or similar tub and fill water enough to cover roots. I’ve found that clear containers work best to get roots going. Keep in sunlight.
- Water should be changed every day to prevent slips from rotting. If the water has a strong vetiver or stagnant water smell you can do one of two things. Either lessen the amounts of Vetiver per bucket, or change water more than once a day.
- New roots will appear after a few days. Vetiver slips can be planted anywhere from 1 to 2 weeks after initially putting them in water. Tiny hair-like feeler roots growing from main roots are a good indicator they are ready.
- Ground should be relatively weed free and kept that way until Vetiver is established.
- Vetiver should be planted in rows and no more than 3 inches apart within them. Should some not take, they should be replaced immediately. Vetiver will be completely brown in color if they should be replaced and there will be no root structure securing it in place. This should be done periodically, before nearby Vetiver get too tall or thick.
- Once planted, Vetiver should be watered regularly for the first couple of weeks and periodically thereafter.
- Vetiver will grow in unfertile soil, but to be used as an effective vegetative barrier, it should be fertilized.
Our seed stock is pure ‘Tropic Sun’. Hawaii is the only US state where ‘Tropic Sun’ seed can consistently be produced. ‘Tropic Sun’ is a cultivar release that was developed at the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, Plant materials Center on Molokai, Hawaii.
‘Tropic Sun’ is highly prized as a fast growing green manure crop for soil improvement. Not only will it add nitrogen (134-147lbs/acre) and organic matter (up to 2 tons/acre) to your soil it can greatly reduce plant parasitic nematode populations in a crop rotation system. It is also an excellent cover crop for controlling erosion, suppressing weeds, and is non-toxic to animals including livestock and poultry. In fact, research is being done in Texas and South Carolina regarding ‘Tropic Sun’ as a summer annual forage.
Please don’t be fooled by other imported varieties (from: Africa, India, Mexico, Phillipines, etc.) which have distorted our product and damaged ‘Tropic Sun’s’ reputation. Our product is grown in the USA and may be the only non-toxic variety available.
‘Tropic Sun’ will grow as a summer annual essentially wherever sweet corn can be grown (virtually anywhere in the US). It should be planted after the last killing frost in spring. Soil temperature should be above 60 degrees F. About the time eggplants and tomatoes are planted.
‘Tropic Sun’ should be grown in a soil PH between 5.0 and 7.5. Calcium and Phosphorous are the main nutrient requirements for ‘Tropic Sun’ as it has difficulty growing in soils low in it.
Ideal elevation is from sea level to 2,500 feet but was found to grow at 3,963 feet in Fallon, Nevada.
‘Tropic Sun’ should be planted at a rate of 30-50lbs per acre drilled or 40-60lbs per acre broadcast. ‘Tropic Sun’ requires a minimum of 1 inch of water per week. ‘Tropic Sun’ should be grown for a period of 60 days or 3 feet in height (for home gardeners) before cutting or mowing and incorporating into your soil. At this stage, nitrogen is high and decomposition is fast. ‘Tropic Sun’ is never recommended to be grown longer than the 60 day period if being used as a green manure. Being in the hemp family, ‘Tropic Sun’ may become fibrous and difficult to plow if it is left longer than the recommended period.