Kozhikode: The farmers of Wayanad are concerned over the impact of the soaring temperature and the absence of rains.
The farmers in panchayats like Pulppally and Mullankolly bordering Karnataka have started uprooting traditional plants like pepper and are preparing to cultivate short-term crops. The Deccan plateau climate is spreading to the Nilgiri biosphere where farmers will be forced to switch over to other farming methods and opt for short-term crops, it is said.
Noted scientist Dr Anil Kumar of MS Swaminathan Research Foundation told DC that the drought intensity would be higher this year.
"Instead of macro weather systems, we should establish micro weather monitoring systems and each panchayat situated in weather hot spot can take the lead in this," he added. "The border regions of Pulppalli are close to the Deccan plateau and the climate across river Kabani is entirely different," he pointed out.
"There are serious discussions on growing a tree shield along the banks of Kabani to check heat wind from the plateau," he added.
The district used to get early summer showers that help flowering and pollination of coffee.
The pepper vines would not sustain in high temperature, it was pointed out. Though there were scattered rains in some pockets, the district is yet to receive sufficient rains all over.
Dr P. Rajendran, former director, Regional Agriculture Research Station at Ambalavayal, Wayanad, said that the entire crops would be affected due to the rising temperature.
"If we do not get enough summer showers soon, coffee, pepper and paddy would be badly hit," he added....