January 14, 2020
Coimbatore : As a Pongal (harvest festival) gift o farmers, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU) today released 13 new crop varieties, consisting of seven in agriculture and six in horticulture crop, as part of its continued efforts to sustain farm productivity and profitability.
There are two rice varieties to suit dry and semi-dry conditions (Co. 53) and late samba / thaladi season under irrigated conditions (ADT 54).
The state is frequently confronted with drought and to suit the delayed release of water in Mettur Dam, these varieties are ideal for the current production scenarios.
In order to replace or substitute ruling Co. 86032 sugarcane, a mid-late high yielding variety Co. 13339 to be released.
The State has 85 per cent of sugarcane is under Co. 86032 which is ruling for the past 20 years and there is urgent need to have alternative to that variety.
With a view to promote mechanized harvest and high density planting, a zero monopodia cotton (Co. 17) has been developed, which is very unique as it suits mechanized harvest and high density planting.
To overcome a serious devastating yellow mosaic viral disease in pulses, blackgram (VBN 11) is released for adoption.
In millets, two varieties (sorghum Co. 32 & Tenai ATL 1) have been recommended to improve the nutritional security particularly children.
These are nutri cereals rich in micronutrients especially Fe and Zn that are utmost essential for pregnant women and children. As these crops require less input, this can be recommended for doubling the farmers income. Further, stover can be used as the roughage or dry fodder.
In horticulture crops, six varieties have been released including banana (Co. 2), tomato (hybrid Co. 4), aggregatum onion (Co. 6), cassava (YTP 2), manila tamarind (PKM – MT2) and manathakkali (Co. 1).
The newly released banana Co.2 is proved tolerant to nematode which is very dreadful disease often combined with wilt and resembles Ney poovan and tolerant to wilt and nematode and a boon to banana growers of Tamil Nadu.
The tomato hybrid (Co. 4) is known to produce 27 per cent higher fruit yield than other hybrids besides long shelf-life and high acidity.
To cater to the needs of farmers demanding for seed propagated aggregatum onion and possessing a long-shelf life, Co.6 onion has been recommended by the committee.
Shelf-life is the need of the hour and the existing onion variety (Co. 5) popular amongst farmers have short shelf-life which can be overcome by the newly released one.
The YTP 2 cassava is a highly tolerant to mosaic disease recorded a high tuber yield (46.2 t/ha) with a starch content of 30 per cent.
Further, a red aril manila tamarind (PKM 2) which has high percentage of anthocyanin and rich source of anti-oxidant.
The value of produce in the city market in the range of Rs. 50-200 per kg. As this tree requires less input and highly drought tolerant, it is highly recommended for Ramnad, Tuticorin, Virudhunagar and Sivagangai Districts.
A highly valuable medicinal plant “manathakkali” Co. 1 is recommended for release as it carries a wide array of medicinal properties particularly vitamin B complex and a curative property against mouth lesion.