Disease, pest outbreak affect standing crops

Paddy, ragi, and red gram crops, among others, hit

Standing crops, including paddy, ragi, field beans and red gram, have been hit on thousands of hectares in Mysuru following an outbreak of diseases and pest infestation.

The Agriculture Department is striving to protect the crops and has supplied an adequate quantity of chemicals to farmers to protect the standing crops. According to department officials, pests and diseases broke out in T. Narasipura, K.R. Nagar, Hunsur and Mysuru taluks.

Somasundra, Joint Director, Agriculture Department, told The Hindu that chemicals such as monocrotophos, chlorpyrifos, Indoxacarb, carbendazim are made available in all the 33 Raitha Samparka Kendras (RSKs) across the district. He said officials are also engaged in educating farmers on pests and disease management, and crop protection. Chemicals are being distributed to farmers at subsidised cost, he said, and added that farmers had purchased chemicals and were using it to protect the crops.

S. Nagendra, Agriculture Officer, told The Hindu that because of crop diversification, pests and diseases were not spread extensively in the district like in few other districts like Tumakuru, Chitradurga and Davangere.

Extent of land

Mr. Nagendra said that paddy is grown in over 57,459 hectares, ragi in over 38,474 hectares, field beans in 13,536 hectares and red gram in 1,995 hectares. He noted that owing to good rain in the past few months, crops are being grown healthily and farmers were expecting a good yield this time. However, the outbreak of pests and diseases has kept them farmers on tenterhooks, he said, and claimed the department was making all efforts to tackle the problem and help farmers get a good yield this time.

Help from Bengaluru

The department has appealed to the University of Agriculture, Bengaluru, to send a team of agriculture scientists to Mysuru to examine crops affected by pests and diseases and to offer suggestions to protect the crops.

Mr. Somasundra said that the team would be able to identify the pests and diseases and suggest accurate measures to be taken.

Mr. Nagendra, Agriculture Officer, said officials of the department and an entomologist from KVK, Suttur, and also plant protection subject matter specialist Sathish had toured many villages in K.R. Nagar taluk and they were expected to visit few more taluks such as T. Narsipura and Hunsuru in the next few days. The entomologist and the officials were engaged in giving advisories to farmers on plant protection, he said.

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Printable version | Apr 4, 2020 9:40:12 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/disease-pest-outbreak-affect-standing-crops/article19978110.ece

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