Large cardamom (Amomum. subulatum Roxb) commonly known as a badi elaichi, is a tall, perennial, evergreen, herbaceous monocot plant. Large cardamom is well known spice, which has medicinal value. The present study has been designed to explore the base line morphological characteristics, chemo-profile, to raise superior quality planting materials through micro propagation and large cardamom farming as an appropriate livelihood option for mountain inhabitants of Uttarakhand. Three cultivars of large cardamom being cultivated in Uttarakhand viz., ‘Dzongu Golsey’, ‘Sawney’ and ‘Varlangey’ were studied critically for their morphological variations. Dzongu Golsey thrives well in lower altitudes (<800 m), while Varlangey prefer the altitude between 1000-1450 m and Sawney flourish well between 1000-1600 m.The GC-MS analysis of essential oil indicates quantitative variations within intra-specific and may attribute to the micro-climate under which the species grown. FT-IR analysis was use for the identification presence of 1,8 Cineole in A. subulatum essential oil and determine the functional group presents, through comparing the vibration frequencies in wave numbers. The economic benefit and presence of preferable habitat in mountain regions clearly indicated that large cardamom farming is an appropriate livelihood option.
Keywords: A. subulatum, 1,8 Cineole, altitude, Microclimate