Cashew, mango, coffee, pineapple, pepper, and shade-giving plantations to be promoted
The Integrated Tribal Development Agency, under its proposed action plan for all the 11 Agency mandals for 2012-13, will be promoting cashew plantation in 1,500 acres, mango in 1,500 acres, coffee in 7,732 acres, pineapple in 200 acres, cashew rejuvenation in 4,000 acres, coffee rejuvenation in 20,000 acres, pepper as an inter crop in 7,732 acres, and shade-giving plantation in 20,000 acres.
Under the innovation project, Agave plants will be taken up for fencing and shade-giving purposes.
As part of the action plan, 64 cashew plants per acre are being planned and the total requirement of seedling is 96,000 for the 1,500 acres. The seedlings will be procured from Bapatla and the Aswaraopeta Horticulture Research Station.
The ITDA will be procuring 72,000 mango seedlings from nurseries at the rate of 48 plants per acre. For planting the shade-giving trees in 20,000 acres, 1,000 saplings per acre will be planted and the requirement of seedlings is 2 crore. The ITDA is in the process of procuring the seed and is also raising nurseries for the plantation programme. An estimated 2,000 kg seed is required as per the action plan.
Under the coffee plantation programme, 1,000 plants per acre is planned and an estimated 77,32,000 seedlings will be procured from the community nurseries, which have the plants in sufficient quantity. Pineapple plantation will be taken up at the rate of 5,000 plants per acre. About 10 lakh plants are required and the same will be procured through tenders.
Under the cashew rejuvenation programme, 4,000 acres of old and aged plantation has been identified and 64,000 new seedlings will be procured to fill the gaps caused by the removal of dead and unfruitful trees. Old cashew trees, with many primary and secondary branches, stand upright, but there is little or no vigour, and so there is no potential yield from such trees. This is affecting the whole cashew nut plantation in terms of yield and profitability. Enhanced productivity of the aged cashew tree is possible through “top working” of 10 to 15 years old tree.
Agave plants, which have multiple benefits and applications, will be planted as shade-giving and fencing plantation under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme.