Horticulture is a field of plant agriculture that focuses on garden crops such as fruits, vegetables, and ornamental plants. The name comes from the Latin words hortus, which means “garden,” and colere, which means “to cultivate.” It is a broad phrase that relates to various types of garden management, but it is most commonly used to refer to intensive commercial output.
Horticultural crops are diverse; they include annuals and perennials, delicious fruits and vegetables, and ornamental indoor and garden plants. These particular crops help to sustain and enrich our lives by providing nutritious food, enhancing the beauty of our homes and communities and reducing carbon footprint.
How many types of horticulture are there?
Horticulture is divided into edible plant cultivation and ornamental plants which are floriculture, landscape horticulture. Pomology deals with fruit and nut crops. Olives are grown with kitchen plants, including carrots (edible root), asparagus (edible stalks), spinach (edible leaves), cauliflower (edible flower buds), tomatoes (edible fruit), and peas (edible seeds) Floriculture refers to the production of flowers and ornamental plants; usually cut flowers, potting plants, and greenery. Landscape horticulture is a broad category that includes landscape plants, including lawns, but especially nursery crops such as shrubs, trees, and vines.
Horticultural Innovation Laboratory focuses on horticultural crops, mainly fruits, and vegetables. Common definitions of horticultural crops include herbs, spices, and ornamental flowers.
Why is horticulture important?
Horticulture enriches the diet: Horticulture, especially the cultivation of fruits and vegetables provides essential nutrients for a balanced diet. Dietary deficiencies in fruits and vegetables are one of the leading causes of malnutrition in the world.
Horticulture increases income: Farmers who grow high-value crops such as fruits, vegetables, flowers or herbs earn more than growing other staples. Horticulture is an engine for agricultural and economic diversification.
Which crops are grown under horticulture in India?
India’s physiographic, climatic, and soil qualities allow it to grow a diverse range of horticulture crops. India is one of the world’s largest vegetable-producing countries.
Growing mainly in the Coorg, Wayanad, South Palani, and Nilgiri hills at altitudes of 600 to 1,500 m.
Orange can be grown successfully in a variety of soils, but the ideal soil is medium or light loam. Covered with heavy black soil, marine and good drainage.
The soil thrives on steep slopes, usually on sown hills and in moist areas. In the plains, where the trees need to be watered, the ground should be leveled.
Orange production regions are Assam, Nagpur, Punjab, Wayanad, Coorg, Palani Hills, and Nilgiris.
Mangoes constitute 50% of the total fruit production of the country. Mangoes grow up to 1,500m above sea level across the ground levels. It is suitable for a wide range of climates and soil conditions. It can withstand dry conditions and heavy rainfall. From June to September, mangoes receive 75-250 cm of rainfall and an average temperature of 28 C.
Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, and Kerala are the major producers of mangoes in India. The major varieties are Chaousa, Safeda, Langra, Dasheri from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, Alfonso from Maharashtra, Goa, Banganapalli from Andhra Pradesh, Totapari from Gujarat, Kesar, Karnar from Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.
As a sub-tropical fruit, it grows well in dry climates with short winters, harsh winters, and long dry summers. They do not grow in moist summers. Grapes grow well in light, burnt, clay soils with drainage. Heavy soil is not suitable.
Different varieties grow in different regions. In the northern plains, the most common varieties are Black Prince, Bedana, Foster’s seedlings, Khandhari Dakh, Muscat and Perlet in Alexandria; In arid and temperate regions Thompson is seedless, sultana, and raisin white; In South India, Bangalore Blue, Grape, Rose, Black Champa and Thompson are grown without seeds; In western India, Cheema Sahib, Anab-i-Shahi and Thompson are grown without seeds.
The major grape producers are Punjab, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.
There are broadly of two types—table and culinary. Among the former are Poovan in Chennai (also known as Karpura Chakkarekeli in Andhra Pradesh); Mortaman, Champa, and Amritsagar in West Bengal; Champa and Mortaman in Assam and Orissa; Safed Velchi, Lai Velchi and Rajeli in Maharashtra.
Bananas are grown in tropical areas where temperatures do not fall below 16 °C and rainfall below 150 cm.
The major producers are—Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, and Kerala.
A cold winter produces plenty of fruit. The total area of guava is 30,000 ha and Uttar Pradesh has the largest area of guava.
It is a moist tropical plant, Plains and above 900m. It grows in all types of soils but does not tolerate very high temperatures or frost.
Assam, Meghalaya, West Bengal, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, and Karnataka are the major producers of pineapple.
Cashew plantations were introduced to India by the Portuguese in the 16th century.
Cashews do not tolerate harsh summers or winters. It requires a temperature of about 20 C and rainfall varying from 50 to 400 cm. It does not require much soil as it grows even in very rocky soils) However, the success of a cashew orchard requires adequate and continuous soil moisture.
The fruits ripen from March to May but last till November-December which is the rainy season.
Cashew is generally grown in the coastal districts of Kerala, Goa, Karnataka, and Maharashtra. East coast of Tamil Nadu, Orissa, West Bengal, Pondicherry, and Tripura also produces cashew nuts.
Production has made a qualitative leap in recent times. Produces high-quality protein mushrooms from agricultural waste. It contains lysine (the amino acid deficiency of grains).
The main species in India is the white mushroom. Farmers in central and southern India now grow oyster mushrooms; Orissa and Kerala grow paddy straw mushrooms.
Until 1980, Jammu and Kashmir and Himachal / Pradesh produced mushrooms (White Button variety is temperate). Currently, several states like Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, and Punjab have started production with other varieties.
They are an important component of the human diet around the world. Therefore, the rate of vegetable production in a country has a major impact on the nutritional status of that country. A good factor for growing vegetables is that most vegetables are short-lived crops. As a result, they can be built continuously on the same plot, and the entire gardener’s family work can be used productively throughout the year.
India grows more than fifty varieties of vegetables on an area of about four million hectares, including the major vegetable crops of the country such as potatoes, onions, peas, cauliflower, tomatoes, eggplant, okra, cabbage, and cucumber bit.
Peaches are juicier than apples because of their ruined nature. It grows well in temperate climates. Peaches are mainly grown in Himachal Pradesh, Uttaranchal and Kashmir Valley.
Due to its highly degraded nature, it cannot travel long distances and is mainly used in the local market. However, some peaches are carried too far with high transportation costs.
Pear is another temperate fruit, mainly grown in Kashmir, Kumaon region of Uttaranchal, Himachal Pradesh in the north, and Nilgiri Hills in the south.
These areas offer cool winters, cool summers, moderate rainfall, a high percentage of clouds and fog.
Apricot is a temperate fruit that needs 130 to 200 cm of rain, moderate temperatures, and humid nights.
It requires a cool climate with plenty of moisture in the early stages and moderate temperatures in the last part of growth. It is mainly grown in the Kashmir Valley, Himachal Pradesh, and the Kumaon region of Uttaranchal.
For strawberry, the growing season requires temperatures above 16 degrees Celsius and plenty of water, as the strawberry fields is submerged in 10 cm of cool, slow-moving water for at least three months.