As temperature rises, almond tress blossom in Kashmir  

Srinagar: Amid the rise in day and night temperatures, the Almond trees have been blossoming prematurely causing concern to the horticultural farmers in Kashmir valley, officials said.

At the Almond trees at the sprawling ‘Badamwari’ or Almond garden in down town Srinagar, buds on most of the trees have blossomed amid rise in temperature.

Temperature rose in February itself and due to which the buds of Almond trees started blooming prematurely, Srinagar horticulture officer Iftikhar Hussain said.

He said that if the temperature warms up earlier, the fruit trees will develop early blight, which may cause the sector to suffer.

The premature blossoming of almond trees in the Kashmir valley has caused concern among the horticultural farmers.

Hussain said that similar activity has been witnessed in the past too, but the trend did not cause too much loss in the production of the fruit.

Faizan Arif, an independent meteorologist of the valley, said that there used to be snow in the month of February. But this year, no snow was recorded during this month.

He said on the other hand, the day and night temperatures were higher than normal during this month which could be the reason the buds started to break out prematurely.

He said that premature rise in temperature can have negative effects on many things.

Faizan said heavy rains, strong winds and hailstorms are common in the month of March that can destroy the blossomed buds which will have a direct impact on the fruit.

The meteorologist said that usually after the half of March is over, the buds begin to sprout on the trees.

He said that there is also a risk of water shortage may cause in the valley due to higher than normal temperature which may affect the production of paddy crop too.

Faizan said that premature increase or decrease in temperature is the result of climate change.

Meanwhile, a fruit orchard owner Ijaz Ahmed from Parsabad in central Kashmir’s Budgam district said that the temperature is high in the month of February itself, if the fruit trees develop blossoms, then our loss is certain.

He said that we have been suffering from losses for the past several years due to premature heavy snowfall and last year there was less demand which directly hit our crop.

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