Farmers from different parts of the state had a rare opportunity to understand the best practices in banana cultivation at an exhibition on banana, organised as part of the Foundation Day of the National Research Centre for Banana at Podhavur near here on Saturday.
The exhibition aimed at providing first-hand information to the farmers about the success of the crop in a few belts across the State. About 10 stalls were set up by various leading firms manufacturing pesticides and fungicides, to resolve the problems faced by banana cultivators.
The tissue culture banana variety brought by SPIC Agro Biotech Centre, Coimbatore, was the centre of attraction at the exhibition.
Two bunches of giant-sized tissue culture ‘grandnaine' species harvested by D. Indhurani, a farmer of Karaipudhur village in Palladam taluk in Coimbatore , attracted all the visitors. One of the bunches had 17 hands with 306 fruits. Its weight was 58 kg. Another bunch, weighing 54 kg, had 16 hands with 288 fruits. The farmer had been cultivating banana on about 10 acres and had successfully raised the tissue culture variety, says K. Velmurugan, Marketing Officer, SPIC Agro Biotech Centre. He said tissue culture banana variety was gaining popularity.
Another stall put up by Tari Bio-Tech, Thanjavur, proved that fertiliser and fungicide manufacturing industry keeps pace with the outcome of the latest research programmes. The NRCB had recently released a bio-control agent ‘beauveria' to control the pest infection caused by banana stem weevil. The Tari Bio-Tech had manufactured and marketed ‘beauvericide' to control the weevil.
The Foundation Day was also marked by lecture sessions in which farmers got their doubts clarified on pest control and fungus management in the crop.