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Custard Apple: Crop stage-wise IPM

Management Activity

Pre planting*


Common cultural practices:
• Timely sowing should be done.
• Field sanitation, rogueing
• Destroy the alternate host plants
• Apply manures and fertilizers as per soil test recommendations
Nutrients • Pits (50 x 50 x 50cm) are to be dug during summer season and kept open for controlling soil borne pests.
• Pits should be filled with a mixture of top soil and farmyard manure in 1:1 ratio a fortnight before planting.
Weeds • Cultivate the field before planting to destroy existing weeds in the field.
• Summer ploughing is helpful in destroying weeds seeds and rhizomes in the soil.
• Adopt stale seed bed technique
Resting stages of diseases &pests and nematodes Cultural control:
• Dig the planting pit during summer season and keep it open for at least one month.
• Soil solarization: Cover the pits with polythene sheet of 45 gauge (0.45 mm) thickness for three weeks before sowing for soil solarization which will help in reducing the soil borne pests.
• Apply neem cake @ 2 kg/pit.

Planting*


Common cultural practices:
• Use healthy, certified and weed free seeds.
Nutrient • Planting is done in rainy season at a distance of 4m x 4m.
• Add Trichoderma and Mycorrhiza mixture @ 50 g per pit at the time of planting.
• Apply 300 g of fertilizers mixture of Urea, Single super phosphate and muriate of potash in equal proportion are added in each pit.
Weed • Remove existing weeds in and around the pits at the time of planting.
• Mulching with organic or biodegradable material.
Soil borne diseases and nematodes Cultural control:
• Make a trench keeping the distance from the main stem as per the plant canopy width and apply neem cake @ 2 kg/ plant/pit.

Vegetative stages (1-5 years)


Common cultural practices:
• Destroy crop debris
• Avoid water logging
• Avoid water stress
• Enhance parasitic activity by avoiding chemical spray, when 1-2 larval parasitoids are observed
• Custard apple bears flowers on current season growth and very rarely on older branches. The early completion of season is essential for the initiation of new growth. Therefore manual defoliation during the mid-summer is recommended.
Common mechanical practices:
• Use light trap @ 1/acre and operate between 6 pm and 10 pm
• Install pheromone traps @ 4-5/acre for monitoring adult moths activity (replace the lures with fresh lures after every 2-3 weeks)
• Erecting of bird perches @ 20/acre for encouraging predatory birds such as King crow, common mynah etc.
Common biological practices:
• Conserve natural enemies through ecological engineering
• Augmentative release of natural enemies
Nutrient

Application of manures & fertilizers: (per plant)
The bearing trees of Custard apple should be fertilized as follows

2nd to 5th year
FYM 30 kg
N 400 g
P 250 g
K 800 g


• Nitrogen should be applied in the form of FYM and oil cakes each at 25% and the remaining 50% with chemical fertilizers. While P2O5 in the form of super phosphate and K2O in the form of sulphate of potash.
• Manures are applied in 2 to 3 equal doses i.e. first dose in December-January, 2nd done in June-July, 3rd dose in September, Potash application can be reduced if the soil is rich in this nutrient.
• Nitrogen containing fertilizers should be applied in three equal splits in January, July and November months; phosphorus containing fertilizers in two splits in January and July months and Potassium containing fertilizers may be applied as singly dose in January.
• Adopt ring method of fertilizer application.
• A mixture of zinc sulphate 0.5%, manganese sulphate 0.2%, boric acid 0.1%, urea 1% and lime 0.4% has to be sprayed two or three times in a year to control chlorosis in leaves.
• Intercrops: During pre bearing period short growing crops like groundnut, ragi, bajra wheat, pulses and vegetables (except solanaceous crops) can be profitably grown in the inter spaces.
• In the bearing orchards green manure crops like sunhemp, green gram, cowpea etc., are raised and incorporated into the soil during the monsoon period.

Weeds • Timely Interculture and hand weeding should be done with hand tools for initial 5 years.
• Mulching: After weeding and manuring, application of dry-leaf mulch or paddy husk to a thickness of 8 cm in the basin keeps down the weed growth and decreases the number of irrigations, and improves the fruit quality.
• In the initial years of planting, intercrops like groundnut, minor millets, linseed and gram should be grown.
Mealy bug Cultural control:
• Collect and destroy the mealy bug infested leaves, twigs and fruits.
• Flooding of orchard with water in the month of October kill the eggs.
• Ploughing of orchard in November.
• Avoid plant stresses - healthy plants are much less susceptible to attack
Biological control:
• Release Cryptolaemous montrouzieri beetles @ 10/tree or @ 30 larvae/plant twice at 15 days interval.
• The Coccinellid Menochilus (Chilomenes) sex maculatus (F) is a predator of the nymphs and adults, and the Hymenopterous parasite Anaysis alcocki (Ashm.) Anagyrus dactylopii and Aenasius advena are three parasitoids on mealy bugs.
• Release of coccinellid Scymnus coccivora @ 10 beetles /tree or @ 30 larvae/plant is a good predator of both nymphs and adults.
Scale insect Cultural control:
• Collect and destroy damaged leaves
• Apply well rotten sheep manure @ 4 t/ acre in two splits or poultry manure in 2 splits
• Control ants and dust which can give the scale a competitive advantage.
Biological control:
• Field release of ladybird beetle.
• Spray dormant oil in late winter before spring.
• Spray horticultural oil, if needed, year round.
Anthracnose Cultural Control:
• Prune dead twigs before flowering, and remove infected fruit and dead leaves regularly.
• Leaf and soil analysis should be done to maintain adequate nutrient concentration in plants particularly calcium and nitrogen
• Avoid planting susceptible varieties.
Leaf spot(S) Cultural control:
• Collect and burn the infected plant parts to minimize the spread of the disease.
• Increase air circulation by proper training and pruning.

Flowering and fruiting

Nutrient

• The bearing trees of Custard apple should be given 250 g N, 125 g P2O5, and 125 g K2O per plant before the commencement of rainy season.

6th year onwards (per plant)
FYM 30 kg
N 600 g
P 500 g
K 1200 g
Weeds • Remove weeds from basins around the trees by hand weeding followed by mulching with organic materials.
• Control weeds between rows by shallow cultivation and grow the cover crops as mentioned in vegetative stage.
Mealy bug Cultural control:
• Collect and destroy the mealy bug infested leaves, twigs and fruits.
• Flooding of orchard with water in the month of October kill the eggs.
• Ploughing of orchard in November.
• Avoid plant stresses - healthy plants are much less susceptible to attack
Biological control:
• Release Cryptolaemous montrouzieri beetles @ 10/tree or @ 30 larvae/plant twice at 15 days interval.
• The Coccinellid Menochilus (Chilomenes) sex maculatus (F) is a predator of the nymphs and adults, and the Hymenopterous parasite Anaysis alcocki (Ashm.) Anagyrus dactylopii and Aenasius advena are three parasitoids on mealy bugs.
• Release of coccinellid Scymnus coccivora @ 10 beetles /tree or @ 30 larvae/plant is a good predator of both nymphs and adults.
Fruit borer/ Fruit boring caterpillar

Cultural control:
• Collect and destroy affected fruits.
Physical Control:

• Adopt bagging of fruits.
Biological control:
• Use of braconid parasitoids (Apanteles spp.) to parasitize larvae;
Fruit fly Cultural Control:
• Collect fallen infested fruits and destroy them.
• Provide summer ploughing to expose the pupae.
Physical control:
• Immersion of fruits in hot water (45 to 47°C) for 60 minutes to kill eggs and maggots
• Use 10 traps per acre of methyl eugenol.
Biological control:
• Field release of natural enemies Opius compensates and Spalangia philippines.
Scale insect Cultural control:
• Collect infeseted plant parts and destroy them.
• Apply well rotten sheep manure @ 10 t/ ha in two splits or poultry manure in 2 splits
• Control ants and dust which can give the scale a competitive advantage.
Biological control:
• Field release of Vadalia and Australian ladybugs.
• Spray dormant oil in late winter before spring.
Anthracnose Cultural Control:
• Prune dead twigs before flowering, and regularly remove infected fruit and dead leaves.
• Leaf and soil analysis should be done to maintain adequate nutrient concentration in plants particularly calcium and nitrogen
• Avoid planting susceptible varieties.
Leaf spot (s) Cultural control:
• Collect and burn the infected plant parts to minimize the spread of the disease.
• Increase air circulation by proper training and pruning.

Cultural control:
• Mulch under trees to reduce soil splash.
• Remove dead twigs and mummified fruit each season.
• Prune tree skirts to 50 cm above the ground.
• Regularly monitor fruit for infection during the season so that spraying can start before fruit diseases get too severe.
Diplodia rot Cultural control:
• Use mulching under trees to reduce soil splash.
• Remove dead twigs and mummified fruits.
• Maintain proper plant canopy to reduce the high humidity by appropriate pruting and training. Pruin trees 50 cm above the ground.
Black canker Cultural control:
• Use mulching under trees to reduce soil splash.
• Regularly monitor the diseases and remove dead twigs and mummified fruits.
• Follow proper plant canopy by appropriate prunning and training.
• Prune trees 50 cm above the ground.
Spiral nematode (Helicotylenchus sp.)
Stunt nematode (Tylenchorhynchus sp.)
Cultural control:
• Fallow, flooding and deep summer ploughing,
• Timely planting, manuring and irrigation,
• Use cover crops, antagonistic crops, trap crops,
• Follow crop rotation
• Grow resistant/tolerant varieties
Physical control:
• Practice soil solarization
• Phytosanitary measures: Follow International/ Domestic regulatory measures.
Note: The pesticide dosages and spray fluid volumes are based on high volume sprayer.
* Apply Trichoderma viride/harzianum and Pseudomonas fluorescens as seed/seedling/planting material, nursery treatment and soil application (if commercial products are used, check for label claim. However, biopesticides produced by farmers for own consumption in their fields, registration is not required).

Source: NIPHM, Directorate of Plant Protection, Quarantine & Storage



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