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Wednesday, Nov 26, 2003

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Monsoon remains weak in Kerala

Our Bureau

NORTH-EAST monsoon extended its lull phase with merely isolated rain/ thundershower episodes being reported during the four days ending November 23.

The Agromet Advisory Bulletin issued by the Met Centre, Thiruvananthapuram, said monsoon was weak in the State on November 20, 22 and 23. Mainly dry weather prevailed on November 21.

Forecast valid until November 26 spoke about rain/thundershowers in isolated places in all the districts. No significant change in outlook was indicated for the two subsequent days.

State and stage of crops: `Mundakan' paddy crop was approaching the `panicle initiation' stage. Second weeding and top dressing operations had commenced in the early-planted crop. Plant protection measures were progressing apace.

Intercultural operations, weeding and top dressing were in progress in coconut, rubber, cashew, banana, tapioca and sugarcane.

New plantings were being taken up in sugarcane while harvesting operations in respect of turmeric, ginger and pepper got to a start. Fruit trees were nearing the flowering stages. Early bearing varieties had already reached the flowering stage. Staking of young rubber was in progress.

Agricultural advisory for next three days: Weeding and top dressing operations may continue in paddy fields. In the mean time, strict watch need to be maintained against possible infestations of leaf roller and stem borer. In cases where actual incidence occurs, spraying of Phosphamidon at 0.5 ml/litre of water is recommended.

Similarly, coconut gardens should be watched for stem bleeding. In case where the disease is reported, affected portions should be removed, cleaned and smeared with Bordeaux paste on hot coal tar.

In cashew gardens, Quinalphos at 2 ml/litre of water may be sprayed to keep tea mosquitoes at bay at a time when new flushes are expected to emerge.

Intercultural operations and top dressing can be undertaken in banana, tapioca and seasonal vegetables along with new planting.

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