Red cedar , Santhana Vembu

Toona ciliata



General Information :

  • Red cedar is a fast-growing, large deciduous tree with a rounded, spreading, dense crown.
  • Bark dark grey in color.
  • Flowers honey scented small yellowish in color.
  • Fruits are dark brown capsule with winged seeds at both ends.

Distribution :


  • It is widely distributed in India

Habitat : Deep, rich loamy soil, and alluvial soils.

Soil : Occurs in red lateritic soils and dry sandy soils.

Soil pH : 5.5 and 7.5

Altitude :Up to 1500 m(MSL)

Rainfall :1100-4000 mm

Temperature : 37-47 deg c

Terrain : Plains and low lands

Tree Characteristics :
  • Light demander and sensitive to Frost and drought.

Habit : Evergreen Tree

Planting Guidelines

Natural Regeneration :

  • Naturally regenerates by seeds under favorable conditions.

Artificial Regeneration :

  • Propagated by direct sowing and Nursery raised seedlings.

Seed collection and Storage :

  • The seeds are collected during May - June
  • The best time to collect seeds is when fruits turn yellow and a few start opening.
  • One kg of fruits gives about 200 gm of clean seed.
  • About 350 seeds weigh one gram.
  • The germination capacity ranging from 50-80%.

Seed Treatment :


  • No pre-sowing treatment is required.

Nursery Technique :

  • The seeds are broadcasted on the raise mother bed in May-June.
  • Beds are covered with thin layer of paddy straw and watered regularly.
  • Germination starts within seven days.
  • Two leaf stage seedlings are pricked out in poly bag.
  • 6-8 months old nursery raised seedlings are fit for planting.

Plantation technique :

  • Planting done on the onset of rains.
  • Pit size adopted : 30 cm3 and 45 cm3
  • Spacing adopted: 3 m x 3 m and 4 m x 4 m.

Care & Disease Control :


  • Regular weeding and soil working are essential in young plantation.
  • Thinning in well grown plantation is required in the 4th year onwards.

Irrigation :

  • Good drainage is necessary for optimum development of the seedlings.

Recommended Harvest :

  • 10-15 years

Yield :

  • Approximately170-200 tons/ ha.

Major uses :

  • Timber gives ornamental veneer, used for making furniture, house construction, ceilings, floors, boarding’s, panels, doors and window frames and musical instruments and pencils.
  • It is popular for road side avenues.

Other uses :

The flowers contain a red colouring matter and also a sulphur-coloured dye.Cotton and woollen fabric can be dyed a dull yellow by mere immersion in a boiling extract of the flowers. Used in conjunction with safflower and turmeric, they produce a sulphur-yellow colour.The bark contains tannin. A fibre obtained from the bark has been used traditionally for twines and the manufacture of string bags.An aromatic oil can be extracted from the fruit

Market details :

  • Approximately rs.3500 to Rs.3700/ton.