Imphal, (DIPR): The Department of Horticulture and Soil Conservation distributed pesticides and plant protection equipment to orange farmers in Nungba during a field visit of orange farms recently.
The field visit by a combined team of experts from the department, Plant Health Clinic, Tamenglong and Noney districts officials was made following complaints from farmers regarding the occurrence of pest and citrus diseases.
During the visit to the villages of Padan, Noney, Chumla, Nungba and Mukti Khullen in Nungba sub-division, the combined team confirmed the presence of pest like Citrus Stem Borer, Leaf Miner, Fruit Sucking Moth and Stink Bugs and citrus diseases like Pink Disease of Citrus, Sooty Mould, Citrus Canker, Lichens.
Pesticides and items distributed include rocker sprayer, plantomycin, fipronil, imidacloprid, chloropyriphos, Adjuvant/Sticker, Copper Oxy-Chloride, Sulphur Fungicide, etc.
Tamenglong District Officer, Horticulture and Soil Conservation, Chungong Pamei said an expert team visited Mukti Khullen in Nungba Sub-division, Noney district following a report from farmers on the presence of pest and citrus diseases in their farms.
After proper diagnosis, the expert team found the presence of pest and citrus diseases and conducted demonstrations for the farmers and their workers on use of pesticides to control the pests and diseases. We also educated the farmers of precautionary measures and the Integrated Nutrient Management and provided toolkits, farm equipment, insecticides, etc., he added.
He stated that the team will continue to closely monitor for another week after spraying the pesticides and insecticides to check for results.
Further adding that the Tamenglong Orange has already been GI Tagged, he said that orange farmers facing any issues regarding pest or diseases can contact the department and that the department is ever ready to provide rapid response.
During the inspection, the team visited three villages where there are about 3000 orange trees, he said, adding that production this year would not be less than 30 metric tons.
He also said that orange plantation will help in improving the economy and livelihood of the farmers and that the department will provide all possible assistance to the farmers.
Horticulture and Soil Conservation department is promoting the Tamenglong Orange which has already been granted Geographical Indication, he said, adding that under the Chief Minister and the Minister Horticulture, the department is also implementing Citrus Rejuvenation and Area Expansion and that anyone interested may come to the department.
An orange farmer guiding the expert team, Joyson Kamei said that we had taken up orange plantation in the village falling under Nungba in Noney District since 2015-16.
Since the beginning of this year, we witnessed certain issues including pest attacks and citrus diseases and so we submitted a report from the farmers to the Director of Horticulture and Soil Testing through the Plant Health Clinic and sought expert assistance and remedial action.
Expressing concern that without timely control the pest and disease could spread to other areas and that it would be an unproductive season, the farmer also thanked the State government, Director, officials and teams of the Plant Health Clinic and district officials for their fast and timely intervention.
The team has provided rapid action, pesticides, pumps, technical know-how to the farmers and helpers, he said further thanking the Chief Minister under whose watch swift action has been taken up by the expert team to allay fears of an unproductive season and spread of pest and disease to other plantations.
Plant Health Clinic, Officer in-charge, Dr. Roshan Dangmei was also among the experts who conducted the field visit.