December 9, 2011 admin


LUDHIANA, DECEMBER 9: The “Research and Extension Specialists Workshop for Vegetable, Fruit and Flower Crops,” organized by the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) under the aegis of National Horticulture Mission (NHM), concluded here today. The technical session III on “Floriculture, Agricultural Engineering and Technology, Post-harvest Management of Fruits and Vegetables” took place today. The officers of the Department of Horticulture, Punjab, Directors of Regional Stations and Deputy Directors (Training) at Krishi Vigyan Kendras, visited PAU mushroom and vegetable research farm, new orchard and floricultural experimental area. The participants evinced keen interest in amla, papaya and virus free production of kinnow nursery and peach.
Chairing the session, Dr M.S. Gill, Director of Extension Education, said PAU is the representative of the farmers’ community. He added that the university has and will continue solving the field problems of the farmers. Dr. Gill suggested farmers to pass on their feedback  to the research scientists as the same is considered useful for re-prioritization of research and transfer technology programmes. He added that farmers should maintain contact with experts of PAU and state development departments and get the advice whenever needed. In view of the growing demand for flowers in the global market, floriculture has got a lot of scope, he divulged adding that Tamil Nadu is a leading state in the production of flowers, and that there is a need to increase the area under floriculture in Punjab for further expansion.
During the technical session III, Dr Kushal Singh and other floriculturists of the university including Dr (Mrs) K.K. Dhatt, Dr R.K. Dubey and Mr Ranjit Singh presented an overview of the departmental work and post harvest handling of cut flowers. Besides, they deliberated on cultivation of gladiolus, pansy, chrysanthemum and potential rose varieties and plant material for landscaping. The scientists shed light on varieties of gladiolus released last year which include Punjab Pink Elegance, Punjab Flame, Punjab Glance and Punjab Lemon Delight. Varieties of gladiolus and pansy in pipeline, off season production of gladiolus, potential hybrids of chrysanthemum and promising cultivars of rose for garden decoration were the other highlights of the workshop. Dr Premjit Singh, Senior Plant Pathologist, PAU, referring to the disease management of commercial ornamental plants, educated the participants about the black spot of rose, Botrytis blight of gladiolus, leaf spot of chrysanthemum and leaf and flower spot of marigold.
Dr K.S. Sandhu, Vegetable Technologist, Punjab Horticultural Post-harvest Technology Centre (PHPTC), gave an overview of the activities of PHPTC and delved upon the post harvest handling of fruits and vegetables. Dr Poonam Sachdeva, Senior Vegetable Technologist, spoke about post-harvest processing for value addition in fruits and vegetable crops while Dr K.G. Singh, Senior Research Engineer and Dr Rakesh Sharda, Extension Specialist, discussed about the protected cultivation and drip irrigation for horticultural crops. The new design of net-house to protect the plants against winds was discussed. The Research Engineers Drs Gursahib Singh, Manjeet Singh, Baldev Dogra and Jaskaran Singh explained about the farm machinery including vegetable transplanter, garlic planter, root crop harvester, aero blast sprayer, precision vegetable farming, etc. and highlighted that machines bring precision and timeliness in operations.
Dr Kushal Singh, Head, PAU Department of Floriculture and Landscaping, Dr Jaskaran Singh, Head, Department of Farm Machinery and Power Engineering and Dr K.S. Minhas, Head, Department of Food Science and Technology were the rapporteurs. Dr T.S. Riar, Associate Prof. of Extension Education, PAU, was the session coordinator. 

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