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An Expert System for Disorder Diagnosis in Sugarcane Crop


Abiotic and biotic stresses

In the tropical region, sugarcane gets more or less ideal climatic conditions for its growth. It is cultivated with better package of practices and higher irrigation level. The growing season is long with more equitable and favourable conditions. Diseases such as red rot are the main problems for sugarcane cultivation in the region. Moisture stress during the early part of the cane growth mostly during March to June, is an important problem. Smut is an important disease affecting sugarcane production in this region particularly in the plateau region. In the coastal areas, red rot has become a major threat. Among the pests, early shoot borer, particularly in the late planted crops, and woolly aphid are considerably serious in this region. In sub-tropical region, the extremes of climate is the characteristic feature. During April to June, the weather is very hot and dry and the temperatures are extremely high. December and January are the very cold months with temperature touching sub-zero levels in many places. The major portion of the zone i.e., the North- West zone comprising the areas in Haryana, Punjab and Western U.P., has very low temperature in December-January which often causes frost. Because of extremes of weather, the active sugarcane growth is restricted to 4-5 months only. In eastern U.P., Bihar and West Bengal, sugarcane suffers due to floods and waterlogging during monsoon months. Several pests and diseases, particularly red rot, top borer and pyrilla are common and serious cause of concern. The cane yields are lower in the sub-tropics due to short growing season, moisture stress, more pest and disease infestation, floods and waterlogging, delayed planting after wheat and poor ratooning. The management of these stresses will necessitate the development of better cultivation and integrated diseases and insect-pests management modules.


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