First self-pollinated high yielding ridge gourd in world developed by Agricultural University
Thrissur: The Kerala Agricultural University (KAU) developed the first self-pollinated high yielding variety of vegetable in the world. They developed a ridge gourd named KRH-1. Numerous high yielding seeds can be developed through natural pollination. The process of cross pollination and the seeds produced in this method are rather expensive. But the seeds produced through self-pollination is affordable and the farmers will be benefitted.
KRH-1 is a variety that has many female flowers on the plant. Natural pollination is made possible by planting male and female plants on an equal ratio and distance. The garden for producing the high yielding seeds is prepared by growing one row of male plants for four rows of female plants maintaining a certain distance. Honeybees are the pollinators between the flowers in male and female plants.
The seeds of the vegetables produced through this process have high yielding quality. This technique is used for producing high-yielding variety of vegetable for the first time in the world. The fruit produced in this method weighs about 330 grams and has a length of 44.8 centimetres. One plant produces about 22 fruits which means around 7.4 kilograms of fruits in total. Harvesting can start within 55 days of sowing seeds.
However, the seeds produced in the plants will not have high yielding quality. The farmers can buy the high yielding seeds from the university for affordable rate. Earlier, high yielding varieties were produced through artificial pollination. As this process requires human effort, the seeds were very expensive. Dr A Ashwini and Dr A Pradeep Kumar of the vegetable science wing of the university are the masterbrains behind the invention.