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SEED PRODUCTION IN CUCURBITACEOUS CROPS

S.ESWARA REDDY BOTTLE GOURD: It is a cross pollinated crop and requires 400 and 800 meters isolation distance for certified and foundation seed production respectively. Off type plants should be removed, first before flowering, second at the time of flowering and last at the time of fruit maturity . The anthesis starts form 5 to 7.30pm . The staminate and pistillate flowers open at the same time and the dehiscence takes place between 12noon and 10.30pm when the maximum temperature ranges between 16 to 20c . The stigma retains receptivity 36 hours before and 48 hours after anthesis . Better control measures against insect pests and diseases should be adopted. BITTER GOURD: It is a cross- pollinated crop and requires 400 and 800 met isolation distance for certified and foundation seed production respectively. Minimum three rouging should be done. Flowers start opening at 5am and completely open between 9.30am to 10am.Flowers Take more than 2 hours to open . Dehiscence of anthers takes place about 2 hours before blooming. Male flowers drop in the evening and the pollens become nonviable as the day advances. After 12noon not a single pollen grain is found to germinate and the stigma remains receptive for a much longer period. Fruit setting is normal after crossing between varieties. Fruit set is better through hand pollination than open pollination. SNAKE GOURD:It can be a self pollinated . A female flower can be fertilized by pollen coming from a female flower of the same plant. However, cross pollinations are predominant. The insects are the vectors of these cross pollinations. To ensure the varietal purity ,some horticulturists specify a distance of 1 km between two varieties. Undoubtedly this distance can be reduced according to the biotopes and the type of pollinator insects in the region. In fact the white flowers of this species blossom late afternoon and early evening .The pollinator insects are thus night time insects, which supposedly travel shorter distance than day time insects. When several varieties are grown in the same garden you can employ the technique of manual pollination. CUCUMBER: It is a cross pollinated crop and requires 400 and 800 meters isolation distance for certified and foundation seed production, respectively. During crop period, sufficient

sprayings with insecticides and fungicides should be done to control the insect pests and diseases. Plants affected by virus should be removed regularly. Three weedings should be done, first before flowering, second at the time of flowering and third at the time of fruiting .Seeds are removed after cutting the fruits. The seeds should be washed immediately by clean water and dried properly. RIDGE GOURD: It is a cross pollinated crop and requires 400 and 800 meters isolation distance for certified and foundation seed production respectively. Off type plants should be removed, first before flowering, second at the time of flowering and finally at the time of fruiting. Heavy rouging should be done before and at the time of flowering. Control measures against insect pests and diseases should be adopted. When the colour of fruit turn brown, they should be harvested and kept in sun light for about a week for complete drying. Seed can be extracted very easily only by removing the tip of fruits. About 3 to 5 quintals of seed is obtained from one hectare. ASH GOURD: It is cross pollinated crop. Anthesis takes place between 5.45a.m. And 7.15 a.m., dehiscence starts from 3.15a.m. Stigma remains receptive 12 hours before and 36 hours after anthesis. The staminate and pistillate flowers open at the same time. About 800 meters isolation distance is required for foundation and certified seed production respectively. Rouging should be continued till harvesting and at last time rouging should be done, first before flowering , second at the time of flowering and third at the time of harvesting. Ripened fruits are harvested and seeds are taken out from the fruits. Seeds are washed, dried and stored at cool and dry place.

dr_esreddy@yahoo.co.in 24th November 2011