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ISHS Acta Horticulturae 534: International Conference and British-Israeli Workshop on Greenhouse Techniques towards the 3rd Millennium

VEGETABLE PRODUCTION IN COLD DESERT OF INDIA: A SUCCESS STORY ON SOLAR GREENHOUSES

Author:   B. Singh
Keywords:   Solar energy, greenhouse, cold desert, vegetables
Abstract:
India is having 74,809 km2 of cold desert area in states of Jammu & Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh. The region is characterised by high altitude sandy mountains, extremely low temperatures and short cropping season (May-September). It is difficult to grow anything here in winter. Different greenhouse structures viz. glasshouse, polyhouse, local mud polyhouse and trench (underground greenhouse) were evaluated for vegetable production at Field Research Laboratory, Leh (Ladakh).

Data on maximum, minimum temperatures and crop yield were recorded in different structures. Suitability of structures in terms of cost of cultivation and production of crops was worked out. Higher diurnal temperature was observed in glasshouse as compared with polyhouse. Higher night temperature was observed in trench followed by local mud polyhouse. Growth of leafy vegetables was better in trench in comparison to other structures. Polyhouses and trenches in Ladakh were found to help in raising early nurseries of vegetables, production of early vegetable crops, extension of growing season and vegetable production during frozen winter. Leafy vegetables can be cultivated in the trenches and polyhouses in extreme winter when land gets frozen and nothing grows outside. Trench has been found most efficient and economical greenhouse structure for vegetable production.

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