Dr. Y. S. Parmar University of Horticulture & Forestry

Kandaghat, District - Solan, Himachal Pradesh 


Coordination with extension and field functionaries

  • Officials of line departments (Agriculture, Horticulture, NABARD, DMR, NGOs etc.) are actively involved in planning and execution of demonstrations and training programmes of KVK. Since they are the members of scientific advisory committee, they play an important role in framing the action plan of KVK. Most of the training programmes, field visits and survey works are organized jointly. In addition to this, the scientists of the KVK extend their scientific know- how by way of delivering lectures and conducting field demonstrations of various operations during training programmes sponsored by line departments.

Farm advisory services

  • Scientists of KVK Conduct various diagnostic visits in the farmer’s fields for on the spot solutions.

  • Started free SMS service for the farmers of the district in 2010.

  • Provided consultancy to the 89 farmers visiting KVK during 2010-11.

Implementing state and central governments sponsored agriculture related development programmes

  • Various training programmes sponsored by state and central governments as well as NGO’s are being organized apart from handling sponsored Research and Extension Projects.

Location specific technologies and adaptive trials

  •  As per Annual Action Plan.

Skill demonstrations

  • “Hands - on training” are conducted on fruit, vegetable and flower nursery production and managements, production of potted plants, orchard management practices, canopy management, IPM, INM, protected cultivation of horticulture crops etc.

Dissemination of technologies through AIR, doordarshan, websites and newspapers

Technology is being disseminated through AIR, doordarshan, newspapers from time to time by the faculty members.

Success stories

A) Protected cultivation of vegetables:

The total greenhouse area worldwide is estimated to be more than 2,50,000 ha. Japan, China, South Korea, Spain, Italy, and Holland are the major greenhouse user countries. The total greenhouse area in India at the end of ninth plan period was estimated to be 800 ha. Ladakh region of J&K has the maximum number of units i.e. more than 14,000 and each unit is about 50sq m. In Himachal Pradesh, the total area under protected cultivation has been estimated to be 137 ha.

Biotic and abiotic stresses are the main factors responsible for low yield and poor quality of vegetables under open field cultivations. The vagaries of climate also prevent year round open field cultivation of vegetables. The protected cultivation of vegetables not only overcome the stresses but also open the gates for off-season and year round supply of vegetables with remunerative prices to the growers. In H.P. 80% farmers are small and marginal one and the Department of Horticulture also encouraging the farmers to construct polyhouses by way of providing 50% subsidy under Horticulture Mini Mission programme. A number of farmers in Solan district have constructed polyhouses and started growing flowers and vegetables. The KVK Kandaghat encouraged the farmers to grow sweet pepper and tomato in the polyhouses and in this context has laid On Farm Trials (OFT) at Basal ( Solan), Mahog (Chail) and Sai (Baddi). The farmers were provided seedlings of two varieties of Capsicum viz., Bomby (Red coloured fruits) and Orebelle (Yellow coloured fruits) to grow under polyhouse as well as open field conditions. The production of Orebelle var. was higher as compare to the Bomby var. both under open and protected condition. The average sale rate per kg of these varieties is Rs. 40 /kg. Thus a farmer can get an income of Rs. 17,05000to 1800000/ha as compare to their open field cultivation where the income may vary from 1,88,000 to 2,04,000/ha. Therefore, growing coloured capsicum under protected conditions (Naturally ventilated polyhouses) have proven a boon to the growers of Solan district.

B) Kandaghat and Solan Blocks of Solan district are the major vegetable growing areas of the state where majority of the farmers are small to marginal land holders.They grow mainly cash crops like tomato, capsicum, pea, cauliflower, ginger and French bean, etc. and earn attractive returns. Biotic and abiotic factors are the main factors responsible for low yield and poor quality of vegetables under field conditions.The recent advancement made in agriculture i.e. protected cultivation of vegetables not only overcome the stresses but also open the gates for off-season and year round supply of vegetables with remunerative prices to the growers. The polyhouses can be used for growing healthy nurseries, off season vegetables and flowers. KVK has demonstrated the farmers about polyhouses technology and as such many farmers in the area has started raising nurseries in the polyhouses and also have undertaken the protected cultivation of vegetables like coloured capsicum, tomato and flowers etc. The speedy dissemination of the new technologies has resulted in achieving success in many ventures being taken up by the farmers. To mention a few, Mr. Inder Singh Thakur of village Dolag, Kandaghat is one who used to cultivate off season vegetables with his family members for livelihood. In between he attended some crop seminars organized by this KVK and Department of agriculture regarding nursery raising. He got very much inspired by the idea and started vegetable nursery raising as an entrepreneurship. In 2001-02, he started with the nursery raising of capsicum var. California Wonder in 15 beds of size 7’x2’ each and sold approximately 30,000 seedlings @ Rs. 15/100plants in a season and earned meager profit. In the subsequent years, he increased the area three folds and also started nursery production of tomato, cabbage, cauliflower and onion. He also introduced low lying tunnels (30ft. x 7’ x 3.5’ ) covered with UV stabilized polythene sheets arranged from IPCL, Ludhiana. Earlier he used to supply seedlings to farmers of Solan district but now farmers from Shimla, Sirmour and even from Haryana are coming to him with the demand for vegetable nursery. Every year he is increasing his area under nursery production by setting up at least one tunnel of size 60’ x 7’ x 3.5’. By the year 2006, he had 13 permanent tunnels of the size 60’ x 7’ x 3.5’ and is using about 6 kg of tomato seeds, 14 kg of capsicum seeds, 5 kg of cauliflower seeds, 1kg of cabbage seeds and 50 kg of onion seeds annually. Sometimes he confronts with the problem of nursery diseases which he takes care of by consulting the scientists of this KVK. The farmer is using farm yard manure @ 50kg/ tunnel in addition to some ash. The farmer has constructed one RCC tank of size 12’ x 8’ x 5’ entirely for irrigation of nursery by using lift irrigation system from a nearby Nalah. At present, he has engaged two permanent labourers @ Rs. 3000/month in addition to two members of his own family throughout the year. He has sold approximately 6.0 lakh seedlings in the year 2006 viz., tomato seedlings @ Rs. 40/100 seedlings, cabbage, cauliflower and capsicum @ Rs. 30/100 seedlings and that of onion @ Rs. 40/kg. The farmer is getting net profit of Rs. 1.5-2 lakhs/year. Mr. Inder Singh Thakur has constructed a pucca house for himself, purchased one vehicle and his children are also getting education in a good English medium school. He has made all these assets out of nursery raising only. He owes his success to his hard work, KVK Kandaghat and line department of the district who helped him to make his efforts a success.

C) Sh. Niraj Thakur is another farmer who has taken up protected cultivation of coloured capsicum and carnation in his polyhouses at Basal, 2kms. from Solan town. He has construced six polyhouses in an area of 1000 sq. mt. Initially he started with the cultivation of coloured bellpepper with two varieties namely ., Bomby (Red colour fruits) and Orebelle (Yellow colour fruits) in an area of 450 Sq. mt. having about 1000 seedlings in it. He has used drip irrigation system and trained the plants up to a height of 8ft. using rope staking system. The average yield obtained by the farmer per plant was around 3kg.The average sale rate of these varieties was between Rs. 50-55/kg. which resulted in an attractive returns of Rs. 1,35,000-1,40,000 from an area of 450 as compared to Rs. 35,000-40,000/800 sq. mt. under field conditions. Therefore growing coloured capsicum under protected conditions has proven a boon to this grower. More area is being opened for the cultivation of coloured bell pepper in the state on account of attractive returns from this crop in protected as well as under field conditions. Since it has great demand in five star hotels and is used for salad and Mr. Thakur has also taken up the cultivation of flower crops namely carnation and is very much impressed with this technology. This KVK is educating more farmers to undertake the commercial cultivation of vegetables and flowers in the area and thereby motivating farmers for adoption of these latest technologies which is need of the hour in hilly areas where the land holdings is very small and this can help in boosting the income of the farmers. The other good example of this technology is available in Mahog village of Chail valley where the farmers after getting inspired have shifted their cultivation of vegetables and flowers to the protected conditions. The KVK is also making farmers aware of the various funding agencies like Horticulture Mini mission where the farmers can avail subsidy facilities to start with these kind of vocations.

D) Management of root knot nematode in tomato: Kandaghat and Solan blocks of the district Solan are among the major tomato producers of the State, where although, farmers are small to marginal land holders, 100 per cent families used to grow it as a cash crop. In the region the crop is grown in about 60-70 per cent of total cultivable area. Among the various biotic factors responsible for low productivity in tomato the role of phytoparasitic nematodes (mainly root-knot nematode) is of very high significance and every year causing heavy losses (upto 50 per cent) to the crop. Although, demonstration trials for the management of root-knot nematode (M. incognita) in tomato have been going on regularly in different locations of the District since the year 2000, with their results highly convincing and satisfactory to the farming community, it was in the year 2004 that the results could be best visualized/ realized by the farmers. During the year, the farmers of village Hathon under Kandaghat Block of the district sought help from KVK, Kandaghat against root-knot nematode problem, which had been posing a serious threat to their tomato crop through its acute infestation for the last about two- three years. The severity of the infestation in the village could be realized at a glance by visualizing the samples of nursery plantings of their tomato crop (which they had sent for the confirmation of the problem). The nursery seedlings were surprisingly loaded with the root-knot galls to the tune of 60-100 per cent. From the survey studies of the village, about 80 per cent fields harbouring the tomato crop were found badly infested with the nematode with infestation intensity of an individual field between 80- 100 per cent.

Although, almost all the farmers of village (15-20 No’s) followed the management strategies in one or the other ways, a group of six farmers namely; Sh. Keshwa Ram, Om Prakash, Kuldeep, Ram Pratap, Khem Chand and Bhim Singh strictly adopted the suggested management tactics step wise and fetched remarkable output.

The following treatments were asked to be followed

i) Field preparation

Farmers were asked to give two deep ploughings to their fields (earmarked for the crop) at an interval of 15-20 days. After watering the fields upto saturation level each field was thoroughly applied with a nematicide phorate (10G) @ 2.5-3.0 kg/ bigha by mixing it with some inert material like ash, sand or soil. After application of the chemical, fields were again ploughed, clodded and planked thoroughly so as to make the fumigant action of the chemical an effective one.

ii) Nursery raising:

After preparing the beds, waste material (straw, stubbles, papers, bushes, hedges etc.) was burnt over it for 30 minutes. Thereafter , nursery soil was treated with 5% formalin (1 part formalin:7 parts water) for 21 days. After formalin treatment, nursery soil was watered upto saturation level and carbofuran (Furadan 3G @ 10-15 g) or phorate (Thimet 10G @ 3-5 g) was applied in it.

iii) Transplanting:

Uprooted seedlings from the beds were given root dip treatment for 15-20 minutes in carbosulfan (Marshal 25EC) @ 2ml/lt of water in a shallow container so as to dip only the root systems of the seedlings.

All the peasants of the village (enlisted) were fully satisfied with the performance of management strategies which they adopted in their nurseries and fields against the nematode problems. As per the data being submitted by the peasants in the treated plots, they harvested 31-50 per cent higher yields with up to 80 per cent reduction in the nematode infestation. Cost benefit ratio in the treated and untreated plots ranged between 1: 5.2- 1:6.9 and 1:2.1- 1:5.0, respectively. Overall efforts could make the farmers to fetch net profit of 3.67- 4.87 lakh per hectare in their treated plots while it remained between 1.48- 3.50 lakh per hectare in their untreated plots. From the overall efforts made in this direction now it can be said that the farming community of the village which was earlier scared of this devastating problem now could develop a lot of confidence to deal with the problem in their fields successfully. The peasants are now in a process to standardize the strategies for the regular check up to this problem. Till date demonstrations have been laid out in the fields of about 30 farmers of about 15 different villages in the district. About 500-600 farmers have been made acquainted with the severity of the nematode problem and its management strategies through off campus training camps and majority of them are implementing the technology successfully in their fields.

E) Transferring of IPM technology in tomato:

Tomato is the main off-season cash crop of mid-hills of Himachal Pradesh which brings lucrative returns to the farmers of the area. During the survey studies of the Sirinagar and Mahi Panchayats of Kandaghat block it was found that the yield of the crop is decreasing day by day due to the attack of various insect pest and diseases. The main reasons for this decrease in yield are monoculture and indiscriminate use of pesticides which has in turn led to the resistance development in the pathogens and insect-pests. So it was thought worthwhile to tackle this problem in an IPM mode. Keeping this in mind, the KVK has conducted several FLDs in the farmers fields for controlling major insect-pests and diseases of tomato following integrated pest management strategy. Following treatments were used in a succession so as to reduce the incidence of diseases (damping-off, buck eye rot, bacterial spot and alternaria blight, etc.) and insect pests (fruit flies, cut worms, fruit borer etc.) alongwith the farmer’s practice:-

  • Soil treatment of nursery beds with formalin 5% @ 25L/bed (3 x 1m).

  • Seed dip treatment with Streptocycline @ 150 ppm for 30 minutes.

  • Seed dressing with Captan @ 3g/ kg of seed.

  • Drenching of nursery beds with Dithane M-45 + Bavistin (0.25% + 0.1%) at an interval of 10-15 days.

  • Application of malathion dust (2%) @ 2.5 kg/ bigha and phorate granules @ 1.5-2.0 kg/bigha.

  • One spray of Ridomil MZ @ 0.25% before the onset of monsoon.

  • Three sprays each of Dithane M-45 (0.25%) + Streptocycline (0.01%) and blitox (0.3%) alternatively at an interval of 7-14 days.

  • Two sprays of Malathion/Decis @ 0.1% on the appearance of flies (June and July).

  • Collection and distruction of diseased fruits regularly.

  • Pruning of lower leaves upto 15-20 cm height.

  • Proper drainage, staking and weeding during cropping.

Farmer practice: 25 sprays of pesticides indiscriminately.

By following the recommended practices, there was a remarkable increase in yield in the treated plots (600-650q/ha) as compared to untreated plots (400-450q/ha). There was no incidence of damping off in the treated plots as compared to control (40%) whereas incidence of buckeye rot and alternaria blight was also reduced from 32 and 21.5% in farmer practice to 5 and 6.2 per cent in treated plots, respectively. The severity of bacterial spot was also reduced from 79.8% in farmer practice to 21.5% in demonstration plots. The incidence of cut worms, fruit flies and fruit borer was also reduced to the tune of 1.2, 3.5 and 2.3 per cent as compared to 19.7, 26.8 and 22.4 percent in control, respectively. The farmers were fully convinced and satisfied with the results of this technology. More than 500 farmers in the area are adopting this technology now and are getting better returns of their produce.

F) Cultivation of coloured capsicum under polyhouse conditions:

Capsicum is a major vegetable crop of Kandaghat, Dharampur and Solan blocks of district Solan next only to tomato. For the last few years, the farmers had been suffering with major losses due to diseases like leaf blight, fruit rot, collar rot and wilt in open field conditions. This forced the farmers to think of an alternative for beneficial production of the crop. As a result, the farmers tried to grow capsicum in low cost poly tunnels or polyhouses. Initially, Indra variety was introduced for cultivation in polyhouses for use as green. Soon, coloured varieties of capsicum attracted the attention of the growers. The farmers started growing coloured capsicum on small scale with varieties like Orobelle and Bombay.

The farmers did not know the exact technical know-how (like suitable varieties, basal dose of fertilizers to be applied, pinching, fertilizers to be used for fertigation and the number of fertigations required) for growing coloured capsicum commercially. Therefore, they sought the help of this KVK for technical guidance. On demand of the farmers, OFTs on this crop are going on since the inception of this KVK, however, in the year 2007, the farmers were highly satisfied and praised the KVK for providing scientific guidance and introduction of superior varieties like Tanvi and Tanvi Plus. The following farmers adopted the technology provided by the KVK to a greater extent.

Sr. No.

Name of the farmer




Sh. Madan Mohan Mehta




Sh. Aatam Swaroop




Sh. Ashok Kumar




Sh. T.N. Kaushal



Yields and economic returns of these farmers were increased manifold following the improved production technology compared with the traditional method. These farmers could get returns worth Rs. 1, 25, 000 to 1, 50, 000 from a polyhouse of just 225 m2.

The cost of production for colored capsicum has been depicted in the following table:


Yield (q ha-1)

% inc. over FV

Cost of prod. (Rs. ha-1)

Gross return (Rs. ha-1)

     Net return     (Rs. ha-1)

B: C ratio

Bomby * (red)



24, 97, 555

65, 52, 000

40, 54, 445


Tani Plus (red)




76, 38, 000

51, 40, 445


Orobelle* (yellow)




70, 02, 000

45, 04, 445


Tanvi (yellow)




84, 30, 000

59, 32, 445


* Represent the farmers’ variety.
- FV is farmers’ variety.
Sale price of produce (Rs./q) = 6 000/-
Cost of polyhouse of per year (Rs. ha-1) = 5, 55, 555/-
Cost of inputs (labour + fertilizers + transportation) / ha = 9, 42, 000/-
Total cost of production / year (Rs. ha-1) = 24, 97, 555/-

G) Off-season Chrysanthemum cultivation in Mahog village near chail town of Solan district

1. Technology/Process which was intervened for its success:

Front line demonstrations along with off and on campus trainings in collaboration with Horticulture department on improved cultural practices with main emphasis on scheduling of planting dates, response groups and complete black out technology in chrysanthemum was the focus of present intervention.

2. Background about case or problem (Reason, Problems leading to its development as a success story/ case, existing farming system and agro- ecological situation).

  • Chrysanthemum is a short day plant which requires 14.5 hours of day length for the initiation of flower buds and shorter day length of 13.5 hours for their further development. Usually, chrysanthemum flowers during October- November in the sub- temperate mid-hill climate of North Western India. The excess production from H.P mid- hills during this period results in market glut, thereby ,reducing the average market prices drastically which causes huge economic losses to the growers.

  • The prevalence of favourable climate which mainly includes mild temperature regimes available to the growers during summer and rainy season months made it possible to undertake off season cultivation of cut chrysanthemum in Mahog area falling in Kandaghat block of Solan district.The summary of technology develop6d by KVK, Kandaghat mainly included standardization of planting dates, selection of suitable cultivars like Yallow Star, White Star, Poornima, Fiji Yellow, Tata Century, Thaichung Queen etc., standardizing their response groups and accordingly giving dark period treatment to the plants. Usually, planting of rooted cuttings was done in second week of April followed by pinching after one month and real black out process started approximately after two months of planting or when plants were about one feet tall. The black out was done by covering with black polythene sheet starting from 5pm to 9 am and the process continued till 75 percent of flower buds started showing colour. The duration of black out ultimately depends upon response groups of cultivars and on the existing temperature conditions during the production period.

3. Effect of the technology/ process on

1. Production and Productivity :

The area under commercial floriculture was nearly 5 Bigha 10 years back and the protected area was about only 1-2 bigha with only one or two growers involved in this activity. The recent survey shows that more than 40 growers with more than 35 bigha land holding are currently engaged in this business and the protected area accounts for more than 15 bigha of land holding. The productivity per unit area of land holding under intensive cultivation has increased manifold when compared to traditional cereal – vegetable based cropping systems.

2. Economic gains (per unit expenditure, gross income, net income, C:B ratio):

        Shown in the Annexure -1

3. Suitability in the existing farming/ cropping systems:

Off season cultivation of chrysanthemum under protected conditions greatly extended the availability of flowers over a longer cropping period resulting in better economic returns to the growers when compared with normal season crop. Both Protected and open field chrysanthemum cultivation fitted well with the existing vegetable- cereal based farming situation.

4. Acceptance of technology/process in terms of views of the farmers and its horizontal spread :

The concept of black out system leading to off season production in chrysanthemum, ultimately resulting in greater profits to the growers, has widely been accepted in the whole area and more growers are joining hands with earlier few progressive farmers to take up this new venture. At present, about 50 growers of the area are actively engaged in this activity.

5. Substitution or replacement of commodities:

The earlier commodities like cereals(wheat, maize),vegetables(potato, pea), oil seed crops(mustard, toria) and open field flower crops like gladiolus and marigold have been substituted to a greater extent by the more intensive protected flower crops like chrysanthemum, carnation, Alstroemeria and lilium.

6. Social impact (formation of clubs, groups, federations, etc.) :

  • The off season chrysanthemum cultivation following black out system in the Mahog village and its surroundings has generated so much enthusiasm among the growers that they have formed a cooperative society named The Chail Valley Cooperative Society, with the present strength of about 25 growers. These motivated growers have joined hands together to further expand the flower activity through increased production and channelised marketing. The growers have even learnt the greenhouse fabrication and their repairs which have allowed them to save expenditure on this component.

7. Marketing Channels:

After initial marketing difficulties, the growers have finally settled and have established contacts at Delhi flower market at Cannaught Circus, near Hanuman Mandir on Khadag singh Marg. They sell their produce through Delhi based commission agents (Artis) who charge 10 percent commission on sale proceeds on daily basis. The flower rates vary on day to day basis and the demand and supply are dependent on festivals, marriages, game events , other social, religious and public functions. The flowers after proper grading and packing are transported to Delhi market mainly through transport buses.

8. Establishment of process/ units :

Initially, the movement started with 2-3 progressive growers who after coming into contact with KVK scientists learnt the black out/ off season technology and implemented the same on their farms at Mahog. Other growers followed on their foot steps and later on, formed their own cooperative society which is running successfully till date. More than 30 growers have established their own independent units all of which are making handsome profits.

9. Linkage with technology/ development organizations:

The Scientists of KVK, Kandaghat are in constant touch with the whole group of growers of village Mahog and are providing all the necessary technological inputs related to successful and profitable production. Development organizations like state department of Horticulture , Block development office and banking institutes have rendered all possible help in terms of providing the necessary inputs and other infrastructural facilities like polyhouses, tanks, , grading and packing sheds by giving subsidies up to the extent of 50 percent to the growers.

10. Places and Addresses of concerned farmers or persons who could be contacted:

  • Shri Madan Mohan Mehta, President, Chail Valley Cooperative Society, Vill. Mahog, P. O. Chail, Tehsil Kandaghat, District Solan. (H.P). PIN- 173217. Phone- (Mob)- 9418826644

  • Shri Bal Krishan Shandil, Secretary, Chail Valley Cooperative Society, Vill. Mahog, P. O. Chail, Tehsil Kandaghat, District Solan. (H.P). PIN- 173217. Phone- (Mob)- 9418269635

  • Shri Pratap Singh Thakur, Vill. Mahog, P. O. Chail, Tehsil Kandaghat, District Solan. (H.P). PIN- 173217. Phone- (Mob)- 9218743788

  • Shri Babu Ram, , Vill. Mahog, P. O. Chail, Tehsil Kandaghat, District Solan. (H.P). PIN- 173217. Phone- (Mob)- 9418127588

  • Shri Atam Swarup, Vill. Mahog, P. O. Chail, Tehsil Kandaghat, District Solan. (H.P). PIN- 173217. Phone- (Mob)- 9805712644

  • Shri Ishwar Chand, Vill. Mahog, P. O. Chail, Tehsil Kandaghat, District Solan. (H.P). PIN- 173217.

Economics of off season cultivation of cut chrysanthemum, grown in one Bigha (800 Sq. mt area)

S. No.




Capital cost



Polyhouse construction cost @Rs 600 per



Fertigation unit along with drip line and misters



Black out cost – black polythene sheet



Total of A+B+C



Recurring cost



Rental value of land @Rs 5 per sq. mt. for 6 months



Planting material



Bed preparation and transplanting



Manures, fertilizers , fungicides and insectides



Staking material






Management cost



Grading , packaging and transportation @Rs 0.25 per stem



Gross total






Net yield/800 sq. mt. area

67,968 number of  cut stems


Average sale price

Rs 8 per stem


Gross income

Rs 5,43,744/


Marketing fee @10 % of sale of flowers

Rs 54,374





Gross returns

Rs 4,89,370/


Gross expenditure



1 Recurring cost



2 Interest on capital cost @10% per annum



3 10% depreciation on capital cost



Total expenditure



Net profit



C:B ratio


A) Rope Staking- A new method of support system in tomato

1. Technology:

Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Solan (Kandaghat) has played a pivotal role in dissemination of rope staking technology, a new method of support system in tomato. The basic idea of popularizing this technology was to reduce undue pressure on our forest wealth. Earlier till 2005, most of the farmers were using traditional method of staking. However, with the intervention of KVK, the farmers were motivated to adopt this new technology by organizing training programmes and also by laying out front line demonstrations on their fields which resulted in 30% adoption of this technology by the farmers of the district.

2. Background about case or problem:

Solan district falls under I and II zones, which include sub-tropical, sub- mountain, low hills and sub-temperate, sub- humid, mid hills. It consists of primarily Agri.-Hort. farming system. The economy of the farmers has increased mainly due to off season cultivation of vegetable crops. Among the vegetables grown in the district, tomato ranks the top in terms of area and production. Out of the 6950 ha area under vegetables in the district almost 50% is covered under tomato cultivation. In irrigated areas, tomato is grown during summer season while, in rainfed areas its cultivation is taken up during rainy season and mainly indeterminate type of varieties are grown. Staking is an important cultural operation in order to protect the crop from lodging and disease problems,. Traditionally, farmers were using wooden sticks (Jhamba) for staking but with the imposition of strict ban on lopping of trees the staking material is not available in required proportions. Moreover, these wooden sticks get destroyed due to termite attack and is very cumbersome to keep the material for next cropping season. Therefore, rope staking has emerged as the best alternative to replace the old practice. Now, more than 30% farmers in the district have shifted towards this method of staking which has proved advantageous over traditional method in respect of good control over training and pruning of crop which is otherwise not possible in traditional system. More number of plants can be accommodated per unit area due to closer spacing. The most important feature of this technology is that vertical space is utilized efficiently which helps in more vegetative growth leading to more number of quality fruits and ultimately higher yields. It is also easier to undertake cultural operations in this system with lesser incidence of diseases particularly buck eye rot due to better aeration of crop. Sh. Keshva Ram, a resident of Hathon village in Kandaghat block was the first farmer who used this system after getting inspiration for the same from KVK scientists and seeing the technology at KVK farm. After seeing the results in his field other farmers of his and nearby villages have also gone for adoption of this technology.

3. Effect of technology process on

a) Production:

In the district, the area under tomato cultivation is increasing year after year. In 2004, it was being grown in 2500 ha with an annual production of 92,220 MT while, at present it occupy an area of 4200 ha with an annual production of 1,25,400 MT.

b) Economic gains:

  • Though per ha expenditure in case of rope staking (3.36 lakh) is higher than in traditional system (3.24 lakh) however, gross income and net returns (9.75 and 6.39 lakhs, resp.) are more than traditional system (7.00 and 3.76 lakhs). The C:B ratio cames out to be 1:2.90 in rope staking while, it was 1:2.16 in traditional system.

c) Suitability in the existing farming/cropping system:

The existing farming system in the district is Agri.-Hort. System and tomato fits very well in this system.

d) Acceptance of technology/ process in terms of views of the farmers:

The technology is very well accepted by the farmers and they are happy with the returns they are getting from the quality produce. Presently, this technology has spread to the extent of 30, 25, 15, 8 and 2% in Kandaghat, Solan, Dhrampur, Kunihar and Nalagarh blocks, respectively.

e) Acceptance of replacement of commodity/technology:

Although rope staking has got many advantages over traditional system of staking yet, due to higher initial cost involved, it has not replaced the traditional system fully. Moreover, to begin with it needs technical guidance also. As the farmers in the remote areas are not so well educated, so they are a bit hesitant to adopt new technology at once. However, in other areas, this technology is replacing the old one rapidly.

f) Social impact:

g) Marketing channel:

Some of the produce is being sent to the lacal sabji Mandi at Solan while, major share is transported to Chandigarh, Delhi and Amritsar.

h) Establishment of process:

Since the inception of remandated KVK in 2000, the awareness programmes were started and after 2004 every year, demonstrations were laid out at KVK farm as well as in the farmer’s fields.

i) Linkage with technology/development organizations:

The farmers are in close contact with the KVK, UHF, Nauni, Department of Agriculture and Horticulture who have contributed towards spread of this technology at farmers doorstep.

j) Models/Cd developed, if any: Nil.

k) Places and addresses of concerned farmers or persons who could be contacted:

1. Sh. Keshva Ram,Vil Hathon,P.O. Kandaghat, Block Kandaghat, Solan Ph. No. 98167- 13823
2. Sh. Chain Singh,Vil. Palhech, P.O. Kandaghat, Block Kandaghat, Solan
3. Sh. Rajeshwar Dutt Sharma, Vil. Silhari, P.O. Kandaghat, Block Kandaghat, Solan
4. Sh. Ram Chand, Vil. Kosawanla, P.O. Kandaghat ,Block Kandaghat, Solan
5. Sh. Rajinder Singh, Vil. Srinagar, P.O. Kandaghat, Block Kandaghat, Solan
6. Sh. Mohan Dass, Vil. Dera, P.O. Chausa, Block Kandaghat, Solan
7. Smt. Preeti Sharma, Vil. Dadhog, P.O. Brewery, Block Solan, Solan
8. Sh. Ramesh Kumar Thakur,Vil. Salumna, P.O. Dharot, Block Solan, Solan
9. Sh. Mohan singh, Vil. Khanog, P.O. Galan, Block Solan, Solan
10. Sh. Bhim Singh, Vil. Rahno, P.O. Deothi, Block Solan, Solan
11. Sh. Sadanand Sharma, Vil. Ghatti, P.O. ghatti, Block Solan, Solan
12. Sh. Anokhi Ram, Vil. Salaha, P.O. Shardaghat, Block Kunihar, Solan
13. Sh. Gopal Dutt Sharma, Vil. Ghat, P.O. Palog, Block Kunihar, Solan

B) Stringless Beans- A profitable venture for diversification :

1. Technology/ process which was intervened for its success

The Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Solan intervened in the form of diagnostic visits of KVK Scientists to solve farmers’ problems, consultation, on-campus and off-campus trainings and frontline demonstrations on the technical know-how particularly on the selection of suitable varieties and other management practices. The growers were motivated to grow stringless beans in place of stringed beans for better returns

2. Background about case or problem (reason, problems leading to its development as a success story/ case, existing farming system and agro-ecological situation).

The Dharampur, Solan and Kandaghat Blocks of Solan District fall in the High mid hills and high hills Agro-Ecological situations of the mid hill zone of the State with moderate and cool climate respectively. Majority of the farmers are small to marginal land holders. The farming/ cropping system consists of Agri-Horticultural system whereby, till over a decade, stone fruit industry was their main venture and this industry that once brought revolution had improved the socio-economic conditions of the people. But area and fruit production began to decline due to various reason and the farmers slowly shifted towards vegetable growing. They grow mainly cash crops and today Solan District is becoming popular for its tomato and capsicum. As a diversification option, apart from other vegetable crops, the farmers are now growing French beans particularly pencil beans-stringless type on a commercial scale as there is less market preference for the stringed types. The scientists of this KVK conducted On Farm Trials and Front Line Demonstrations on different string less beans, organized various training programmes and also visited farmers’ fields providing technical guidance from time to time. Further, with the growing interests of cultivating tomato and capsicum under polyhouses this KVK stressed the need for crop rotation by taking up short duration crops like stringleess French bean during February-April, thereby increasing their economic returns apart from improving the soil and productivity of the main crop.

3. Effect of the technology/ process on

a. Production
The area under beans which was 320 hectares in 2004 with a production of 3150 MT increased to 442 hectares with a production of 49500MT in 2009.

b. Economic gains (Per unit expenditure, grass income, net income, C:B ratio)

The per unit expenditure for cultivating stringless beans is Rs. 60,000/ha with a gross return of Rs. 1, 65,600/ha, net return of Rs. 1,05,600/ha and C:B ratio of 1: 2.76 as against a net expenditure of Rs 50,000/ha with a gross return of Rs 1,04,000/ha, net return of Rs 54,000/ha and C:B ratio of 1:2.08 in case of stringed beans.

c. Suitability in the existing farming/ cropping systems

The cultivation of French beans was in practice since long but only stringed type varieties were available and grown. So the cultivation of string less beans was found suitable in the area and fitted well with the existing farming situation.

d. Acceptance of technology /process in terms of views of the farmers

The farmers after getting technical help and seeing the high acceptance in the market were motivated to take up string less beans. Further, these beans fetched over four times better price than traditional stringed beans and it has become much more popular than the traditional type. This change in the attitude of the farmers towards cultivation of string less to stringed beans reflects an increasing response of farmers to the training programmes and other dissemination technologies imparted by the Kendra.

e. Acceptance of replacement of commodities

In this present era where time is a constraint, a consumer finds it easier and less time consuming for cleaning and using string less beans instead of the traditional stringed ones Further, the consumer also finds it tender and less time consuming for cooking purpose. Hence, this positive attitude of the consumers towards string less beans has resulted in their increased demand thus reflecting a positive response towards the replacement of the stringed beans.

f. Social impact (formation of clubs, groups, federations, etc.): Nil

g. Marketing channels

Problem of marketing has been solved by organization of SHGs into Marketing societies of farmers, with no middlemen. Further with the initiation of a marketing committee and a Sabzi Mandi at Solan itself marketing has become easier for the farmers.

h. Establishment of process/ units

Since its inception as remandated KVK in 2000 and becoming a full fledged KVK in April, 2004, this KVK has tested and refined many technologies and has laid out several demonstrations at farmers fields apart from imparting various types of training programmes. After seeing the results themselves many farmers have readily adopted these technologies which have increased their income manifolds.

i. Linkage with technology /development organizations

The farmers of the area are in constant contact with the scientists of the KVK regarding different problems during the course of crop growth and suggestions have been provided as and when required. The farmers also keep a close linkage with the Department of Horticulture, Department of Agriculture, and also the wholesalers in the Subzi Mandis located in Delhi, Chandigarh, Punjab.

j. Models /CDs developed, if any: Nil

k. Places and addresses of concerned farmers or persons who could be contacted

1. Sh Amar Dutt Sharma, Vill Mansar, , P.O, Salogra, Solan
2. Sh Daya Ram Vill. Salumna, P.O. Dharot, Solan
3. Sh. Baldev Parkash,Vill. Badlayana, P.O. Shamti,Solan
4. Sh. Giri Raj Sharma Vill. Rampur, P.O. Deothi,Solan
5. Sh Naresh Kumar Vill Hart, P.O. Salogra, Solan
6. Sh. Jamal Sheikh, Vill. Jagota, P.O. Haripur, Dharampur
7. Sh. Mohan Lal Kashyap, Vill. & P.O. Kanda, Dharampur
8. Sh Ram Lal Thakur, Vill. Hathon, P.O.Kandaghat
9. Sh. Sanjeev Sharma, Vill. Shichra, , P.O Kandaghat
10. Sh Roop Lal Thakur, Vill Nagali, , P.O Chail
11. Sh. Kshamanand Vill. Kanauri, , P.O Chail
12. Sh Madan Lal Vill. Asloo P.O. Chakhar, Kunihar

Cherry tomato cultivation in district Solan:

District Solan is the leading district in vegetable cultivation and tomato occupies nearly 10,000 ha area. Table tomato varieties are mainly cultivated in the district.. This KVK in the year 2011 developed small fruit sized tomato variety –Solan Red Round and released for cultivation in the state. This variety is exclusively used for salad purpose in metropolitan cities and is developed through hybridization followed by selection. It is an open pollinated indeterminate cherry tomato variety, fruits roundish of deep red colour, weighing 8-12g bearing in clusters of 12-15, having TSS 7.50 Brix, ready to harvest in 45-50 days and having an average yield of 250-300 q/ha. It is resistant to buck eye rot and moderately resistant to foliar diseases. This is the first cherry tomato variety developed by public sector in the state. Other varieties available in the private sector are- BSS 366, NS 574 and NS 577, however their fruit size varies from 15-20g which is not a desirable character from marketing point of view. Due to appropriate size and deep red colour of the fruits of Solan Red Round, it has more demand among the farmers and consumers as well. The variety can be grown in two seasons i.e. Spring-Summer and Rainy season both under open and protected conditions.
For the populararization of this variety, KVK has laid out about 100 demonstrations in Solan (Kandaghat, Kunihar, Solan and Dhrampur blocks), Bilaspur, Sirmour and Shimla districts of the state covering an area of 4 ha. The farmers are marketing the fruits of this variety to Delhi and Chandigarh markets in 2-5 Kg boxes. They fetch a premium price of Rs. 50-70/Kg as compared to table tomato varieties which are being sold @ Rs. 15-20/ kg. Thus, Solan Red Round is the best variety for diversification within the tomato crop due to its more remunerative and nutritive value. Moreover, being an open pollinated variety, farmers can produce its seed themselves and thus save seed input money. The demand for this variety is increasing among the farming community and every year many farmers are visiting the KVK to procure its seed.

Awards, distinctions and recognitions:

The station has been awarded 2nd position on two occasions since its inception apart from individual faculty awards.

Extension Activities Undertaken (2005-06 to 2009-10)


Sl. No.









 Field Days








 Agriculture Exhibition








 Farmers’ Fairs








 Radio Talk








TV show








Training materials


(a)    Pamphlets






a)      2



a)      8


 a) 2       





Advisory services








Ex-trainees Sammelan








Women in Agric. Day








Van mahotsav








Newspaper coverage








Scientific visit to farmers’ fields







Scientific advisory committee meeting:

2005-06 – Once
2006-07 – Once
2007-08 – Twice
2008-09 – Twice
2009-10 – Once
2010-11 - Once
2011-12 - Once
2012-13 - Once
2013-14 - Once

Other programmes: Kisan Goshthis, Kisan melas, field days, Farmer-Scientists interactions are being conducted regularly