'Thakara' gains popularity among leafy greens; huge demand in market
Sickle senna which is locally called 'Thakara' was only a weed on the roadsides and compounds till recently. However, the plant has attained the status of a VIP leafy green now and has high demand in the local markets. The merchants and even customers in rural areas ask for sickle senna.
The campaigns that leafy greens can boost immunity also increased the demand of sickle senna. A bundle of sickle senna is sold for Rs 20 in most shops. The tender leaves of the plant are edible. Being a bush, sickle senna is commonly found on waysides and were destroyed widely as a weed. The plant is not found everywhere these days.
Sickle senna's scientific name if Cassia tora. It is an evergreen plant that grows to a height of 30-120 centimetres. The plant is known for its medicinal properties. In older times, sickle senna used to flourish in the monsoon season in Kerala.
Kannur Kakkad native Sanal Bachu is promoter of sickle senna. He maintains a rich collection of leafy greens including sickle senna in his land. Almost all of them are produced by germinating seeds. He is the major supplier of sickle senna to local shops.
Sickle senna is delivered in shops by 10.30 in the morning. Over 2 kilograms is sold within a very short period. Some people even book in advance to get the leaves. A bundle is sold for Rs 20. There are more buyers than expected, said Dwijith, a shopkeeper.