Govt plans to develop gene bank for traditional apple varieties

SRINAGAR: The state government is planning to utilize its fruit plant nursery Zakura for developing a gene bank of traditional apple varieties.
Secretary Floriculture and Horticulture, Sanjeev Verma on Thursday inspected Zakura nursery, which is spread over an area of 8.6 hectares, and asked the concerned officers to develop a gene bank by preserving traditional varieties including Ambri variety of apple.
Verma also inspected the nursery, that is presently growing 2500 grafted walnut plants and 1000 grape cuttings in the green houses, with officials stressed upon establish more high tech green houses so that the growing demand of quality planting material for farmers is fulfilled. Verma also visited nearby orchard area of Gulab Bagh and interacted with the orchardists and advised them to establish vermicompost units in the orchards and also adopt organic farming system.
Earlier, Verma visited SKUAST-Kashmir where he was shown the high density plantation of apple, vermicompost units and other research activities. The Secretary instructed Joint Director Horticulture to conduct the training programmes of officers of the department as well as farmers at SKUAST so that they get acquainted with the latest scientific activities and techniques to be adopted in the field to increase the productivity as well as quality of the fruits.