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Horticulture deptt issues advisory for farmers  

Post by Syeda Rafiyah on Sunday, January 15, 2023

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Srinagar, Jan 14: In view of prevailing weather conditions, the Horticulture Department in Budgam, Anantnag and Kupwara on Saturday issued an advisory for orchardists and advised them to adhere to precautionary measures to avoid damage to orchards.
The advisory asked farmers to shake trees to remove snow immediately from their branches after snowfall and provide support to trees/limbs which aren’t strong enough to stand without support.
“Stake newly planted trees to prevent any damage as newly planted trees take a couple of years to anchor firmly in the soil,” it said.
The advisory said that if the fruit trees tilt, reduce the canopy load by pruning and provide proper support. “If tree gets partially uprooted, slowly pull back tree to its original position after heavy pruning and provide proper support to the main trunk to prevent further fall,” it said.
It suggested farmers that if the roots become exposed or naked, immediately mulch the roots by soil or some other suitable material to ensure their roots are insulated from winter cold.
“If the top portion of the tree breaks, slantingly cut the damaged branch two to three inches below the broken point and apply Bordeaux/Chaubatia paste on the cut surface,” it said.
“If any scaffold branch breaks and bark is still intact, after heavy pruning, bring the branch to its original position by tying with a rope and/or bolting or using nails. Ensure that the union remains tight and apply Bordeaux/Chaubatia paste on the cut surface. If the main trunk splits into two or three parts, it can be treated in the same way as above,” it said.
Regarding protected structures like green house/poly house the advisory suggested farmers to carefully remove the snow to avoid damage to the structures.
“Clear water channels and drains to ensure complete drainage from the orchards/nurseries. Orchardists are requested not to panic and contact their nearest Horticulture Offices for technical assistance,” it said.
Dr Tariq Rasool, Associate Professor Plant Pathology at SKUAST-K, said in winter months, farmers in Kashmir face another problem that is porcupine that damages apple and almond trees or orchards.
“If the porcupine damages the trees the famers should use grass and cover the damaged parts of trees. When porcupines do not get food they attack the apple and almond trees,” he said.

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