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«PROTECTED CULTIVATION HERALDING SUCCESS Indian Society for Protected Cultivation Centre for Protected Cultivation Technology (CPCT) Indian ...»

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Therefore, alternative sources were tried and table sugar was successfully adopted for micropropagation of potato.

Subculture Cycle For optimum production of micro-plantlets proper duration of subculture cycle required during culture bulking. Subculture cycle of 21 days was optimized for attaining higher propagation rates in potato.

A longer subculture cycle on one hand required more amount of medium, on the other hand it does not result in substantial gain in achieving higher propagation rate.

Inoculum Density Different number of explants per culture vessel was subcultured and it was found that when 30 explants were cultured per culture vessel, maximum multiplication rate of 3.8 was achieved. Whereas, when 10 explants were cultured per culture vessel, a multiplication rate of 2.2 was only achieved at the end of culture cycle. The effect of inoculum size on growth and multiplication of cultures has also been reported earlier. During final subculture cycle, when 30 plantlets were cultured, 28.5 plants/bottle were produced. On the other hand, when 10 explants were cultured 6.5 plants/culture bottle were produced. Therefore, an inoculum size of 30 explants/culture bottle is being used for commercial production of plantlets.

Planting Time The planting time in field had an impact on number of tubers produced per plant and average size of minituber produced. Therefore for attaining proper size and number of tubers, time of production needs to be optimized.

It was observed that early planting on one hand resulted in higher mortality of plants in field, on the other hand number of tubers produced per plant were also less. The plants planted during the last 10 days of October showed higher survival and more number of tubers were produced per plant. Under Patiala conditions, plants planted during different dates of October showed survivial and production as shown in Table 1.

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Dehulming The dehulming period had an impact on quality of tubers produced. It was worked that for production of healthy tubers, dehulming before the buildup of vector population is nacessary. To achieve this objective, dehulming of crop under protective cultivation can be carried out by 30 January, when vector population is still lower. Such crop resulted in production of healthy seed tubers.

Virus Indexing of Minitubers The produced tubers are indexed for viruses using enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). About 98 per cent of samples are turned out to be negative for all the reported viruses of potato in India. Further, sample that shows some positive reaction with ELISA, when these are tested using molecular techniques such as PCRRT-PCT are turned out to be negative for viruses. Thus, an efficient and reliable technology for production of healthy mini-tubers is standardized.

Yield Revenue Generation Sustained yield and supply is required by industry partner for planning the production. Thus, it is very important to maintain the sustained supply of seed to industry partner. Using this technology developed and adopted at TIFAC-CORE, Thapar University, Patiala, it was possible to maintain the sustained supply of healthy minitubers to industry.

A sustained revenue generation has been achieved by supplying minitubers to industry. This sustained generation of revenue was a sufficient to maintain the facilities at TIFAC-CORE on one hand and developed a strong industry partnership on the other hand. Thus, this is am important activity meeting the fundamental objectives of industry.

19 Off-season summer squash fetches more This technology has been developed and standardized for off-season cultivation of vegetables by the Center for Protected Cultivation Technology (CPCT), at IARI, New Delhi. Some farmers in northern plains of India are using this technology for growing off-season cucurbits.

Mr Sanjeev Ahuja is pioneer farmer for off-season summer squash cultivation under plastic low tunnels. He is a torch-bearer for other farmers in the area.

Mr Sanjeev Ahuja of village, Khuban, in Abohar (Punjab), visited CPCT and met Dr Balraj Singh, the then In-Charge. He was very much impressed after seeing the crops under plastic low-tunnel. He planned and took all related advice and started growing summer squash under plastic low tunnel. Now, he

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20 is using this technology for the last three years. During last year, Sanjeev Ahuja used this technology in an area of one acre for growing off-season summer squash hybrid, Chandrika, which is round in shape. Sanjeev Ahuja is extremely happy after growing crop under low tunnels, as it is highly profitable.

The details of planting of crop, yield and economics are given in Table 1. He is now interested to use this kind of technology every year for off-season cultivation of different cucurbits also.

After getting success in plastic low-tunnel, he has now put another four acres of his land under protected cultivation by using shade net technology.

Since last three years, he is growing tomato and other vegetables during typical summer months under temporary shade net house conditions from June to August and getting higher price of tomato and other vegetables.

21 In Greenhouse...

Tomato cultivation is lucurative By adopting hi-tech farming practice, Yogendra Singh has become an icon for other farmers of the region, his progressiveness to adopt modern practices is much rewarding both economically and socially. He is very much satisfied with technological intervention.

A farmer, Yogendra Singh of Ekla Village in Meerut district of Uttar Pradesh, was growing sugarcane and other traditional crops. This conventional cultivation has frustrated him due to low income. Coincidentally, he visited Centre for Protected Cultivation Technology (CPCT), IARI, New Delhi, and met Dr Balraj Singh, Bumper tomato crop in greenhouse the then In-Charge, CPCT.

Looking to the modern techniques of cultivation under protected structures, he was very much impressed. In one of the demonstation made at CPCT of tomato under naturally-ventilated greenhouse, he enquired more and planned to replicate it at his own farm. He took an initiative and constructed a naturally-ventilated greenhouse of 1,000 m2 at his farm. He procured seedlings of tomato variety, GA-600, from CPCT, New Delhi.

He followed all the cultural practices recommended by CPCT. During very first year, he produced 125 q of quality tomato, earning a gross income of Rs 2.0 lakh by direct selling it to nearby hotels located in Cantonment area of Meerut city. The gross income was comparatively low as it was expected due to late transplanting of seedlings.

22 A normal harvesting can be taken from mid-October and continued till May if transplanted in July. During second year (2012), he took care of timings and transplanted the crop in August. The crop is still continuing in greenhouse. Interestingly, he has taken 150 q of tomatoes, earning an amount of Rs 1.9 lakh till February 2013. He will continue harvesting the produce up to May 2013, which may give an additional produce of 40-50 q worth Rs 50,000. In actual terms he got less income from the produce due to low price of tomatoes prevailing in market. But quantity produced was as expected by intervention of greenhouse technology.

The bumper harvest, which he will take this year, has motivated him to extend area under protected cultivation. Now, he has planned to convert one acre in addition to previous 1,000 m2 under naturally-ventilated greenhouse.

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Under the project, 55 polyhouses have been constructed since 2005-06, benefiting 53 farmers. The cumulative floor area of polyhouses is 4,794.5 2 m. The year-wise number of polyhouses and respective area under polyhouses have increased tremendously between 2005-06 and 2012-13.

Hills present a great opportunity to its farmers which is not available to the farmers in plains, i.e. potential of cultivation of vegetables in hills when they cannot be grown in plains, is known as off-season vegetable cultivation.

However, growing vegetables in open conditions is subject to vagaries of weather and attack of diseases and insect pests. This setback can be mitigated to a large extent by protected cultivation. In view of the advantages offered by protected cultivation, a project was undertaken during 2005-06.

Currently, project is active in three villages, viz.

Dudholi, Todara and Pokhrar. The project was initiated in these villages in late 2008. The villages, Dudholi and Todara are under Dwarahat block of Almora district, whereas Pokhra village is under Tomato growing in polyhouse at Dudholi village Dhari block of Nainital district of Uttarakhand. The total number of polyhouses in these villages is 34.

Advantages of Protected Cultivation Higher yield: Tomato grown under protected condition gave 70-243% higher yield during 2007-08 to 2012-13 compared to that grown in open.

24 Similarly, the yield of Capsicum was 256 and 390% higher than the yield in open field in 2010-11 and 2011-12, respectively.

Stability of yield: A comparison of yields of tomato (2007-08 to 2012-13) in open and protected conditions show that yield under protected environment is far more stable than that under open condition.

Better quality and higher price: The average price per kilogram fetched by tomato grown under polyhouse is Rs 2/- more than that grown in open fields due to its better fruit appearance and firmness.

Reduced cost of pest management: Because of closed environment, the efficacy of chemical can be realized to a far greater extent, thereby reducing the amount and cost of chemicals applied.

Successful Innovations Introduction of cucumber: Cucumber, which was taken up as a trial crop in 2009-10 and grown along the sides of a single polyhouse, was such a success that next year the area under cucumber rose from 20 to 500 m2.

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Sliding door: The provision of dual door, one of polythene and another of the net, implies that doors have to open in opposite directions, i.e. one door to open towards the inside of polyhouse and another towards outside. Thus, semicircular area with the radius equal to width Polyhouse with sliding door is ideal of door has to be left unused inside the polyhouse. A farmer, with carpentry skill, has devised the sliding door which requires only the path to be left unused.

25 Cow urine: A farmer at Pokhrar village sprayed the tomato crop in polyhouse with cow urine only and obtained a disease- and insect-free tomatoes.

Moreover, tomatoes kept at room temperature for 28 days remained to look and feel as fresh as the recently plucked ones.

What Farmers State...

Rajendra Rana, village Todara The crop which gave Rs 500 before introduction of polyhouse, now gives Rs 10,000 from the same area. We were imparted knowledge about the identification of diseases and insects and their control.

Gopal Singh Rawat, village Todara The crop grown in polyhouse is not damaged by animals and fetch better market price, which has improved my economic condition.

Puran Singh Rawat, village Dudholi I am a taxi driver and despite devoting less time in polyhouse, I got a very good return from tomato and Capsicum. Now, I have started to grow nursery in polyhouse.

Jeet Singh, village Dudholi I started to work in polyhouse after getting associated with Vivekananda Parvatiya Krishi Anusandhan Sansthan, Almora, which resulted in higher production and market price of tomato, Capsicum and cucumber. I had honour of receiving Innovative Farmer Prize at IARI, New Delhi, due to polyhouse technology of the institute.

Roop Singh, village Pokhra I could not get enough yield due to low land holding. However, since obtaining the polyhouse from the institute, I get five-fold benefit compared to the crop grown outside the polyhouse. I wish to have more polyhouse in my remaining land.


Greenhouse vegetables:

a boon to Uttarakhand farmers D.K. Singh Many farmers in Uttarakhand tried for cultivation of cucumber and tomato in their polyhouses and were successful in their endeavour. The farmers, Krishan Dutt Chaubey, Devi Dutt, Ramesh Chandra, Tara Dutt, Keshav Dutt, Mathura Dutt, Nirmal Chaubey, Prayag Dutt Chaubey and Nityanand Chaubey from Sui, Champawat, each with polyhouse area of 200 m2; Manoj Chauhan from Bannakhera, U.S. Nagar with polyhouse area of 8,000 m2; Sanjay Goel from Jaspur, U.S. Nagar with polyhouse area of 8,000 m2; Kushal Pradhan from Jhankat, U.S. Nagar with polyhouse area of

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500 m2; Ravi Mohan Sharma from Mota Haldu, Nainital, with polyhouse area of 3,000 m2; Devendra Sachan from Sahastrapur, Dehra Dun with polyhouse area of 12,000 m2; Danjay Garg from Hasanwala, Haridwar, with polthouse area of 6,000 m2 and B.S. Sandhu from Bajpur with polyhouse area of 4,000 m2, told that earlier they were involved in production of cut flowers under their polyhouses but due to non-availability of good market in nearby markets, now they shifted to vegetable production, mainly tomato, parthenocarpic cucumber and Capsicum as main crops and coriander, turnip and radish as filler crops.

Devendra Sachan, farmer from Sahastrapur, Dehra Dun, has 6 polyhouses, each having 2,000 m 2 covered area. He is growing tomato varieties, Pant Polyhouse Hybrid Tomato 1, Pant Polyhouse Tomato 2, Avinash 3 and

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Rizk-Zawan, in soil less media. According to his opinion, all varieties are good but those from Pantnagar gave early yield and set their fruits above 40ºC.

The other varieties stopped their fruit setting when temperature goes above 38ºC.

The farmers reported five-fold higher production in polyhouse cultivation as compared to open with lower incidence of insects, pests and diseases.

Polyhouse cultivation gave higher economic return with lower cost of production, giving more benefit per unit area. The produce had better quality, consumer preference, nutrition and keeping quality.

The varieties of tomato and cucumber developed at Pantnagar gave better production as compared to those available in market. The varieties available in the market are producing satisfactory yield only up to the temperature of 30-35ºC but when temperature goes above 40ºC, these European varieties available in the market stopped fruiting but during the same time when temperature exceeded more than 40ºC, varieties developed at Pantnagar gave significantly higher yield.

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