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Drain excess water from apple orchards to avoid root rot: Expert

Post by Javid Sofi on Tuesday, December 20, 2022

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Pulwama: Plant pathologists have urged apple orchardists to ensure drainage of excess water from their orchards to keep root rot at bay.
Dr Waseem, a plant pathologist at Krishi Vigyan Kendra( KVK) Malangpora in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district said that the disease is commonly seen in poorly drained and overwatered soils.
He added that the disease is more prevalent in soggy areas where the water table is quite high and less common in Karewas.
“In olden days this disease was less common as orchards were having sufficient channels for drainage of water, rain or melted snow,” he said, adding that drainage of excess water from apple orchards is essential for keeping the disease at bay.
Root rot is a fungal disease which causes decaying in roots.
The plant pathologist said that the infection begins in secondary roots(rootlets) for being comparatively soft and when infections become severe the primary root too is attacked though comparatively hard.
He said that there can be a number of fungi causing this infection.
“In Kashmir Fusarium and Rhizoctonia are the two prevalent infections,” he said, adding that the infection diminishes the nutrient absorbing capacity of the affected tree affecting its overall health.
He informed that the disease manifests itself in the form of weakening of the affected tree, poor growth, yellowing of leaves, dropping of leaves and branches, splitting of bark around the root and decaying of the root.
“The young tree may get loosened from the soil due to a damaged root system,” he said.
He said that the disease can be checked by drenching the soil with appropriate fungicide in case of young orchards and in orchards of more than 7 years of age the fungicide can be given through holes dug in the ground with an iron rod.

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