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Tuesday, Apr 06, 2004

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Summer showers evenly spread in Kerala

Our Bureau

SUMMER rains continued to be widespread during the four-day period ending April 4 with north Kerala too sharing the spoils.

According to the Agromet Advisory dated April 5 issued by the Met Office, Thiruvananthapuram, rain/thundershowers occurred at many places in Kerala on April 1, a few places on April 3 and at isolated places on April 2 and 4.

Chief amounts of rainfall in cm are:

April 1: Mananthavady-6, Pattambi, Parambikkulam and Enamackal-4 each, Kozhikode, Kottayam, Thalassery, Kanjirappally and Vadakkancherry-3 each and Konni-2.

April 2: Nedumangad-2 and Kuppady-1.

April 3: Thodupuzha-8, Kanjirappally-5, Piravom-3, Devicolam-2 and Kottayam, Kollam and Konni-1 each.

Mean maximum temperature varied between 34 deg C and 35 deg C in various districts, with the highest maximum of 35.9 deg C being recorded at Alappuzha on April 4. The maximum temperature was 3 deg C above normal in Alappuzha the same day and in Ernakulam on April 2, 3 and 4.

Mean relative humidity varied between 64 per cent and 76 per cent, mean cloud coverage between 5 and 6 okta and mean wind speed, 2 kmph and 10 kmph.

Forecast valid until April 7 spoke about rain/thundershowers at isolated places in all the districts. The outlook for the two subsequent days did not indicate any significant change.

State and stage of crops: The `Puncha' crop is nearing the `boot leaf' stage. In late sown fields, the crop is in the panicle initiation stage. New planting is in progress in banana, tapioca, ginger and turmeric. In pepper, planting of `live standards' has commenced. In coconut, lime application, at the rate of 1 kg/palm, and irrigation activity are apace. Harvesting continued in cashew, mango, jack and other fruits.

Advisory for three days: In coconut, the red palm weevil can cause extensive destruction of young palms. In severe cases of infestation, Carbaryl 50 per cent w.p. at 20 gm/litre of water should be directed into the trunk using a funnel. In vegetables, weeding and top dressing can be continued. In pineapple, weeding can be done prior to top dressing. The developing fruits should be covered to protect it from the sun.

In cardamom, clumps affected by `Katte' disease should be uprooted and destroyed. With summer showers raining it down, land preparation for raising nurseries for the `Virippu' crop nurseries can be commenced with.

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