Dry spell, hot weather worry Himachal veggie growers

Dry spell, hot weather worry Himachal veggie growers

2022-03-25 01:33:07


Tribune News Service

Bhanu P Lohumi
Shimla, March 24

Continued dry spell and rising temperature adding to moisture stress in vegetables like bitter gourd, brinjal, tomato, bottle gourd and lauki, especially the crops transplanted in the past 10 days, has become a cause of concern for the vegetable growers.

These vegetables are grown in mid hills with height between 450 and 1200 metres. About 80-90 per cent of the area under vegetable cultivation has assured irrigation but prolonged dry spell and high temperatures could lead to moisture stress in vegetables, said Director Agriculture Narender Dhiman.

Whopping rain deficit

  • Himachal received 5.4 mm rain against normal rainfall of 90.7 mm from March 1 to March 24 (morning), a deficit of 94%.
  • All 12 districts received deficit rainfall, ranging between 86% and 99%. The deficit was maximum in Sirmaur (99%) followed by Shimla (98%) and Una (97%).
  • With Shimla, Kufri and Bhuntar receiving mild rainfall and Mandi experiencing traces of rain on Thursday, farmers are hoping for the dry spell to end.

Peas crop has been affected in some places. “My peas crop cultivated in half bigha turned pale due to high temperatures in the past few weeks”, said Gyan Chand Kanwar from Sujana village in Shimla district.

Himachal received 5.4 mm rain against normal rainfall of 90.7 mm from March 1 to March 24 (morning), a deficit of 94 per cent and all the 12 districts received deficit rainfall, ranging between 86 per cent and 99 per cent. The deficit was maximum in Sirmaur (99 per cent) followed by Shimla (98 per cent) and Una (97 per cent).

The minimum and maximum temperatures are above normal in Himachal. With Shimla, Kufri and Bhuntar receiving mild rainfall and Mandi experiencing traces of rain today, the farmers are pinning hope on rain to end the dry spell. However, the local Meteorological office has predicted dry weather in the state over the next four days.

The increasing temperatures are also adding to the worries of wheat growers in areas of Solan district, and parts of Kangra and Bilaspur district, where the crop is harvested late. However, wheat was unlikely to be impacted in Una district, Indora and adjoining areas of Kangra, Poanta Sahib in Sirmaur and Nalagarh area of Solan district, even though the temperatures here are between 30 and 35 degrees, as the wheat is in maturity state (grain formation) and the harvesting would start by April 15.

The foodgrains and vegetable production was expected at 16.75 lakh MT and 18.50 lakh MT (tentative) in 2021-22 but periodic rains during the month of March when the grains are at milky stage are very beneficial for crops but long dry spell and soaring mercury is causing anxiety to farmers.


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Source by [himachalpradeshtourism.org]

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