Vehari on way to recapturing lost cotton glory with 55pc increase in area, says secretary agriculture

MULTAN   –    Once considered as Cotton King, district Vehari appeared to be on a trajectory to regaining that title after it showed 55 per cent increase in cotton area compared to previous year, signifying a tendency that farmers were recapturing their trust on white gold as a profitable crop.

These views were expressed by secretary agriculture south Punjab Saqib Ali Ateel during visit to cotton fields in district Vehari besides the demonstration plots to assess the impact of recent rains on the crop, says an official release issued here on Friday.

 The secretary visited cotton crop in Tibba Sultanpur, Mitroo, Mailsi and other parts of district Vehari and also the demonstration plots where the technique of applying Integrated Pest Management Model (IPM) involving botanical extracts sprays had proved successful last year and appeared to be fruitful this year too.

Saqib said that last year’s 116,000 acre cotton area swelled to 180,000 acre this year in Vehari registering a 55 per cent increase. The journey to cotton revival has begun in Vehari that was once known as Cotton King, the secretary observed. He said that recent rains have left a positive impact on cotton crop meeting its water deficiency and there was breakthrough with regard to white fly attack. Crop would grow in a better way with more flowers and bolls, he said.

He, however, added, rain usually triggers growth of weeds which farmers must remove to ensure they do not consume vital resources meant for the cotton crop.

Giving a post-rain crop care technique, Saqib advised farmers to apply spray of a mixture of two kilogram Urea, 200 gram Potassium Nitrate, 300gm Boric Acid (17%), 250gm Zinc Sulphate (33%), and 300 gram Magnesium Sulphate in 100 litres of clean water twice on the crop per acre.

After the soil gets moisture, farmers should apply a bag of Urea per acre with ridger. Farmers must opt for pest scouting twice a week as rains can trigger attack of sucking pests due to humidity particularly Jassid, the secretary agriculture said.

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