Cyclone-induced rainfall proves detrimental for mango farmers in Karnataka

BENGALURU: The recent cyclone induced rainfall has resulted in fungal diseases to mango crops and farmers who were hoping for a good yield this year have their dreams shattered. As a low mango yield could be expected for the upcoming season too.

Narrating the plight of mango farmers of the State, a farmer from Kyasapura in Ramanagar, Balakrishna told Deccan Chronicle on Friday that he grows mango varieties such as Badami, Raspuri, Sindura, Tothapuri and already fungal attacks have been noticed in his farm.

He stated that to make matters worse, worm infestations have also started in the crops affecting the second flowering in mango crops and he expects a low yield this season too.

Balakrishna said mangoes of Ramanagar district used to hit the markets first usually but in recent years, cyclone induced rainfall has made the mangoes arrive late in the market and as a result farmers did not get better rates for their produce.

In the State, mango is grown extensively in Chikkaballapura, Kolar, Ramnagar and Tumakuru districts and varieties such as Badami, Mallika, Raspuri , Tothapuri Mallika, Banganapalli, Sindura, Dasehri, Himam pasand among others are grown.

Similar scenario prevails in Chikkaballapur, another district where mango is extensively grown in Karnataka. Surendra Gowda, a mango farmer of the district said, flowering has been damaged in his farm and black fungus attacks were noticed.

“First flowering has gone due to excess rainfall this season and now I expect second flowering in mango trees which is expected in late December. If further rainfall occurs, chances of damage to second flowering looms large,” he observed.

Speaking on the plight of the mango farmers of the State, Dr C.G. Nagaraj, Managing Director of Karnataka State Mango Development and Marketing Corporation Limited, Bengaluru said “It has been seven years since a good harvest of mangoes and farmers were hoping that this season will be a season with a good yield but the prevailing conditions are detrimental for mango crops.”

He told Deccan Chronicle on Friday that advisory has been issued to mango farmers to go for spraying to safeguard their crop from fungal diseases owing to excess rainfall and dew factors and elaborated that the recent cyclone induced rainfall and with the prevailing conditions, fungal attacks to mango crops would lead to blossom blight resulting in flowering panicles drying out.

He, however, said the farmers if initiated precautionary measures such as spraying fungicide and insecticide could save flowering in the crop.

Asking farmers not to panic on account of losing flowering in the first stage, he said that farmers have a second chance of flowering but the only thing is that the crop will be delayed. Despite ‘detrimental’ conditions for mango farmers, Nagaraj observed that a clear picture on the prospects of mango crop would be available after a month’s time.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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