HORTICULTURE

Department of Horticulture and Plantation Crops

In virudhunagar District the major Horticulture crops grown are Mango, Guava, Banana, Amla, Tomato, Brinjal, Bhendi, Onion, coriander, Chillies, flowers like jasmine, Arali, Tuberose etc., In total about 13590 ha of area covered by various Horticulture crops in this district. Doubling production and tripling income of farmers is the primary objective. Encouraging cultivation of traditional cultivars in horticultural crops, adopting Hi-Tech Horticulture technologies, promoting horticulture as a profitable and viable sector by leveraging technologies, encouraging farm mechanization and improved Post Harvest Management etc., The strategies of Horticulture Department are to encourage the use of hybrid seeds and quality planting material in area expansion of horticulture crops, hi-tech cultivation, high density planting, promotion of cultivating high value horticulture crops in protected cultivation, use of micro irrigation, pollination support through bee keeping for enhancing the production, Integrated nutrient management, pest and disease management, farm mechanization and improved Post Harvest Management techniques. The hybrid vegetable protray seedlings will be raised in State Horticulture Farms and distributed to farmers at subsidized cost to increase the area and production under vegetable cultivation.

The major schemes under implementation in Virudhunagar District.

Micro Irrigation scheme under Per Drop More Crop component of Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY):

Micro irrigation is an advanced water conservation and management technology that improves water use efficiency by 40-60%. Irrigation is a critical factor for increasing production and productivity of crop. To use irrigation water more economically and efficiently. Besides water use efficiency, fertilizer use efficiency is also ensured by applying fertilizers through irrigation water directly in the root zones. This irrigation technology minimizes the weed growth and reduces the labour requirement. Through Micro irrigation, area under cultivation is increased with available water leads in doubling the production resulted to tripling farmer’s income. In Tamil Nadu, Government has given big thrust to Micro irrigation and it is the only State in the Country which continued its support to provide 100% subsidy to Small and Marginal farmers and 75% subsidy to other farmers. This scheme is implemented with a sharing pattern of 50:50 small and marginal farmer & 50:25 other farmer between Centre and State.

Integrated horticulture development programme:

Area expansion of high remunerative horticulture crops such as Vegetables, Fruits, Spices and Condiments, Flowers and Plantation crops is being promoted with adoption of high tech cultivation practices.

National agriculture development programme:

National Agricultural Development Programme is a shared scheme between Centre and State with 60:40 sharing pattern. Revival of horticulture crops like choice fruits development programme, mukkani development programme, preservation of traditional vegetables, Area expanse of fruits, vegetables, Spices and flowers. Onion Development Programme, protected cultivation like poly green house and shade net cultivation. Horticulture introduction in Non- farm sector (HINFAS), Homested vegetable /Herbal garden development programme, Assistance for crop specific harvest and post harvest equipment.

Rainfed Area Development programme:

RAD aims at promoting Integrated Farming System (IFS) with emphasis on multi tier cropping, rotational cropping, inter-cropping, mixed-cropping practices with allied activities like horticulture, livestock, fishery, agro-forestry, apiculture, to enable farmers not only in maximizing farm returns for sustaining livelihood. Rainfed Area Development under National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture is implemented with a sharing pattern of 60:40 between Centre and State.

Pradhan Mantri Fasal BimaYojana (PMFBY) Crop Insurance:

The Government is implementing this scheme with a deep concern to protect the livelihood of the farmers suffering from crop losses by natural calamities like drought. Then New Crop Insurance Scheme “Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana” (PMFBY) conceptualized to protect the farmers from production risks, ensure food security, encourage crop diversification, besides enhancing growth and competitiveness of agriculture sector is implemented with the following objectives: Extending financial support to farmers suffering crop loss/damage arising out of unforeseen events Stabilizing the income of farmers to ensure their continuance in farming Encouraging farmers to adopt innovative and modern agricultural practices. Uniform cut-off date for enrolment of loanee and non loanee farmers is the other benefit that will be provided under this scheme. Further, the farmers would get more accurate compensation for crop loss since revenue village has been notified as the unit of insurance. Virudhunagar districts has been categorized under cluster III and implemented by New India Insurance company.

State Horticulture Farms (SHFs):

The objective of State Horticulture farms is timely production and distribution of pedigree and quality planting materials of Horticulture crops to the farmers. There are 2 State Horticulture farms functioning in this district.
1. The State Horticulture Farm, Poovani is located in between Krishnan Kovil and Srivilliputhur on N.H 208 Road. The distance from Srivilliputhur is 5 km towards North and the distance from Krishnan Kovil is 5 Km towards South. The farm is situated on Eastern side of the N.H. Road.

2. State Horticutlure Farm, Srivilliputur is located in Venkatasapuram village of Srivilliputhur Taluk, Virudhunagar District. The Farm is situated in the foot hills of Western ghat 8 Km in North West direction from Srivilliputhur Town.

As a new venture, high yielding varieties/ hybrids of vegetables are produced in Protrays for distribution to the farmers. And also to produce Plants like latest varieties of mango, guava, sapota, amla, acidlime, jasmine and medicinal plants. Rajapalayam sapatai and panchavarnam exclusive Mango variety for virudhunagar district . Guava variety lucknow 49 also called krishnan Kovil Guava very delicious taste and quality and get more income to the farmers.

Deputy Director of Horticulture
Virudhunagar.