January 14, 2012 admin


LUDHIANA, JANUARY 13:The experts of the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), providing useful tips for the winter care and management of fruits, vegetables and ornamentals, have advised the farmers to protect the plants from frost. The young plants, both in nursery and field, should be covered with thatches made of sarkanda supported on bamboo sticks.
Dr P.S. Aulakh, Head, Department of Horticulture, PAU, told that papaya, guava, mango and amla plants are sensitive to cold as their foliage develop yellow or red pigmentation and are affected with cold injury. When fruit growers expect heavy frost, heaps of dry leaves, grass or trash should be collected at many places in the orchard and ignited, said he. Care should be taken that only smoke is produced as this raises the temperature in the orchard by a few degrees and saves the trees from frost injury, they added. Irrigating the orchard just before the cold spell, especially in the evening hours,  helps the fruit plants against frost. For protecting tender plants in the nursery, he suggested the raising of Sarkanda covers keeping southern side open.
Providing fruit management tips in winter, Dr Aulakh   said that the pruning of deciduous fruit trees like peach, plum, and pear should be carried out during January. He added that the deciduous fruit plants can be planted upto second fortnight of January while pear and grapes are planted in the first fortnight of February before they start new growth. If the growers have not applied farm yard manure and fertilizer to the fruit plants during last month, it should be given now, suggested he. Irrigation should be applied to ber trees during this month as the fruits are in developing stage. Suggesting that the trees of mango, peach and plum may be headed back now, Dr Aulakh informed that these trees will give out new shoots which could be budded in February-March with superior scions. Nymphs of mango mealy bug should be prevented from crawling up the trunk by applying 15-20 cm wide slippery band one meter above the ground level. He told that the best time for harvesting kinnow starts from January 15.  
Dr P.S. Brar, Head, Department of Vegetable Crops, PAU, advised the farmers to check the late and early blight of potato by spraying the crop with Indofil M 45/Kavach @ 500-700 g/acre. He asked the farmers to complete sowing of spring potato in the first fortnight of January and transplant 4-6 weeks old seedlings of onion in the field during first fortnight of January, told he.
The Head, Department of Floriculture and Landscaping, Dr Kushal Singh, advised the farmers and the general public to protect the potted and seasonal plants from cold injury and to continue removing faded rose flowers and suckers to improve the quality of new blooms. Regular watering and occasional weeding of the annuals may be carried out, said he, while stressing that the plants like crotons must be kept in protected structures to have their leaves intact.

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