Andhra Pradesh

For mango lovers, it will be a wait longer than usual

Farmer Chinna Pullaiah showing mango flowers on his farm at Orvakal mandal in Kurnool.

Farmer Chinna Pullaiah showing mango flowers on his farm at Orvakal mandal in Kurnool.   | Photo Credit: U. Subramanyam

Last year’s abundant rains have delayed flowering of Banginapalli mangoes by over a month

The abundant rains last year may have been a blessing to farmers across the district, but they have spelt gloom for the cultivators of mango. The current delay in the flowering of mango trees is being attributed to the prolonged monsoon in the district last year.

Speaking with The Hindu, assistant director of horticulture B. Raghunath Reddy said that there needs to be low moisture content in the soil for the trees to start blooming. “Because rains persisted longer than usual, the moisture content in the soil was high, which delayed the blooming,” he explained.

The Banginapalli (Benishan) mango trees – originating in Kurnool –are shy bearers, as we get to see its flowers only every alternate year. “There are about 4,500 – 5,000 hectares of mango plantations across the district. All of them are experiencing delayed flowering,” Mr. Reddy added.

M. Shiva, a 23-year-old tenant farmer from Orvakal mandal, said that the flowering of the plants has begun just about a month ago, as against the normal time of early December. Mr. Shiva, a tenant farmer for over six years now, added: “This is the first time that flowering has been delayed by this much. Otherwise, by now, the trees should have borne fruits.”

Low yield

With bad weather conditions for the trees to bear flowers and summer looming right around the corner, the farmers of the district are also concerned about yields.

The farmers predict that the yield could be cut down by as much as 50% this upcoming season. “Normally a tree yields about 1,000 mangoes. We are currently expecting them to bear anywhere between 300-500 mangoes,” said a 50-year-old tenant farmer Chinna Pullaiah, from Orvakal mandal, adding that there would be a further drop in the yield if the weather conditions are unfavourable.

Ultimately, it is the customer who would be bearing the brunt of the low yield. The authorities expect that the prices would skyrocket owing to low supply.

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Printable version | Apr 3, 2020 4:39:41 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/for-mango-lovers-it-will-be-a-wait-longer-than-usual/article30720033.ece

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