Sindoor, the vibrant vermilion adorning the hair partition of married Hindu women, is traditionally crafted from turmeric, alum, lime, or herbal elements. However, a lesser-known, natural alternative involves extracting it from the seeds of the Camellia tree, a process shared by Somesh Gupta from Tidoni in Madhya Pradesh’s Damoh district.
In a conversation with a media portal, Gupta unveiled the captivating process of producing organic vermilion from the seeds of the Camellia tree, which has garnered attention for its unique and eco-friendly approach.
The seeds found within the fruits of the Camellia tree are utilized to create a red dye, which is then meticulously processed into vermilion in powder or liquid forms. Often referred to as the “liquid lipstick tree” due to its natural lip color potential, the resulting vermilion boasts a distinct charm.
Gupta emphasized the careful cultivation required for these trees, highlighting the need for specific climate conditions and delicate handling. Overwatering and excessive fertilization can be detrimental, while inadequate water supply affects the tree’s fruit-bearing capabilities. Nevertheless, each tree has the potential to yield approximately 1 to 1.5 kilograms of vermilion at a time.
This organic vermilion, with its roots in the Camellia tree, is commercially available in markets at an average price of Rs 300 to Rs 400 per kilogram. The Camellia tree, resembling a guava tree and standing at 20 to 25 feet tall, finds extensive use in various religious ceremonies.
Apart from its significance in vermilion production, cultivating Camellia trees proves highly profitable for farmers. Additionally, the tree offers various health benefits, making it a valuable asset:
- Alleviates skin problems.
- The tea seed derived from the Camellia plant serves as a remedy for individuals with high blood pressure.
- Supports blood pressure regulation, heart health, and stroke prevention.
Rereported article from The News 18n English