Heavy monsoon rainfall this season caused black rot disease and increase in berry droppings in Coffee growing sidtricts of Karnataka manily Kodagu districts records 10-20 per cent crop loss.
The coffee growing districts of Chikmagalur, Hassan and Kodagu have had heavy amount of rains without a break in the last two months. This has caused black rot to set in arabica which has caused berry drop.
Black rot is considered the second important disease affecting coffee. The disease affects both Arabica and Robusta coffee during monsoon. The most striking symptoms are blackening and rotting of the infected leaves, developing berries and young twigs. In severely affected areas, a crop loss of 10-20 per cent is recorded.
Black rot ( Koleroga noxia Donk) usually occurs during monsoon months in endemic areas with high humidity and hanging mist. Blackening and subsequent rotting of young leaves, berries and shoots. Diseased leaves get detached from branches and hang out by means of slimy fungal strands.
It is advisable to coffee growers to facilitate aeration of plants by clearing the base of plants of weeds, dry leaves and mulch and piling them in the space between four plants to prevent berry dropping to some extent.
It is also reported that coffee and areca plants have damaged due to rough winds. Coffee plants are damaged because of tree falls.
Coffee growers are already worried about falling coffee prices and black pepper prices .
“Strong winds shakes off coffee plants due to which rain water directly enters to the base of coffee plants,which leads to droppings of coffee berry as well black pepper spikes-Thimayya, coffee grower, Napoklu ”
“The worst affected areas because of excess rains are in districts of Kodagu, Chikkamgaluru and Shivamogga (Hosanagara and Theerahalli). We fear that there could be a drop in production by about 50 per cent or more if heavy rains continue. There is also the fear of an increase in droppings and disease attack. Both areca and coffee plantations could be affected this year. The areca trees are tall and the tree fall rate is also high – K S Venkatesh Kandya, an agriculturist from Koppa Taluk in Chikkamagaluru ”