The lone orange tree of Srinagar

January 21st, 2009 - 4:04 pm ICT by ANI  

By Pervez Butt
Srinagar, Jan 21 (ANI): A resident of Srinagar has succeeded in growing oranges in the backyard of his house.
Kashmir’’s climate is not suited for cultivating oranges as the temperatures in the valley fall to sub-zero levels during winter with frost being common to which oranges are sensitive.
However, Abdur Rashid Badyari has succeeded in growing the lone orange tree in Srinagar.
Badyari has a hobby of planting a variety of plants since his childhood days but never did he ever expect that he would be able to grown orange tree.
Some years back, Badyari bought few plants along with an orange plant from outside the state and planted it in the backyard of his house knowing very well that the valley’’s climate is not favorable for the growth of an orange tree.
But astonishingly his orange tree not only grew but also bloomed to bear the fruit astonishing his friends and neighbours.
“Earlier many people including my friends thought of this tree as an artificial one. But when they came and saw the orange tree, they started appreciating it. I feel very happy,” said Rashid Badyari.
The tree has presently about 100 oranges hanging from its branches that too in the winter season to the bewilderment of local horticulture experts. They maintain that the climate of Kashmir valley is not congenial for growing oranges.
“It is not possible to grow oranges in Kashmir valley because ours is a temperate area where we can cultivate apples, plums, apricots, cherry and walnut. We can”t grow oranges as the weather is not like Nagpur, but we can grow something like rough lemon,” said M S Qasba, Director, Horticulture Department, Kashmir.
The Kashmir Valley is not a citrus belt. Its summers are usually cool, and the winters experience snow and are freezing. Oranges are sensitive to temperatures below four degrees celsius and that is why an orange tree that seems to be defying natural laws baffles the local agricultural experts. (ANI)

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