Int. J. Biosci.16( 2), 71-79, February 2020
Citrus is most cultivated fruit crop in province Punjab of Pakistan. Since many years, the orchards of Punjab have been facing severe problem of citrus decline. The goals of present research was to estimate yield losses on three main declined cultivars of citrus and assessing role of farmer’s agronomic practices on the disease incidence of citrus decline. For these two goals, a comprehensive survey was planned in citrus belt of Punjab. Yield losses were computed comparing yield of healthy and declined citrus trees. To study the role of farmer’s agronomic practices, questionnaire was developed comprising different questions. The questions were related to orchard age, number of irrigations to be applied to orchards, cultivated citrus varieties, and effect of fertilizer applications, organic amendments and intercropping on the disease incidence of citrus decline. The yield losses results indicated that feutrells early, mausambiand Kinnow varieties were facing 79%, 77% and 76% reduction in yield, respectively. The survey results exhibited that disease incidence of citrus decline was observed low in orchards receiving 6-10 irrigations, with no intercropping, age under ten years, and in which farmers were applying phosphorous, nitrogen and potash fertilizers in adequate amount. Disease incidence was less in orchards receiving organic matter in addition to fertilizers applications. Survey results showed that yield of citrus orchards is significantly lowering due to citrus decline. This study further recommends young plantations, irrigations 6-10, no intercropping, and use of organic matter with optimal applications of phosphorous, nitrogen and potash fertilizers in citrus orchards.
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