There is no qualms on why mango is considered as the king of fruits. The harsh heat of summer becomes bearable due to the unique taste and flavour offered by mangoes during the season. The diversity of mangoes used in Indian cuisine and its nutritive value makes it irreplaceable in the food chain.
In the recent years Mango has lost its uniqueness thanks to the artificial ripening of mangoes and treating the fruit with chemicals for early maturity. Due to excessive usage of fertilisers and pesticides the flowering has reduced to a great extent. Generally the flowering to fruiting ratio of mangoes is 5-10%,due to excessive chemical usage this percentage is decreasing drastically resulting into low mango yields per tree.
Andhra Pradesh is particularly famous for ‘baginapally’ and ‘totapari’ varieties of mangoes with Krishna, Chittoor Vizianagram, West Godavari, Guntur as the major mango growing districts in the state.
The Zero Budget Natural Farming programme of the Government of Andhra Pradesh has started making significant changes not only in agriculture crops but also in horticulture. Mango orchards are now treated with jeevamrutham, practise of mulching along with Pancha Gavya and fermented butter milk.
These ZBNF mango orchards are much healthier and the trees are covered completely with flower blossoms from the early days of the season. It has been observed that the frutification of the ZBNF mango trees are more than the non-ZBNF mango trees.
There was a reduction in rainfall in some areas in Andhra Pradesh during September 2017. It was observed that the loss in ZBNF mango trees was less than in non ZBNF mango trees. Even non-ZBNF farmers with better water facility faced yield loss.
Such evidence prove that the sweetness in mangoes is back. The quintessential ‘aam ka achhar’ (Mango pickle) is now safe for consumption due to ZBNF.