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Strategy For Popularization Of High Yielding Coconut Cultivars Among Coconut Smallholders

Two improved cultivars have been developed: Dwarf X  Tall (DTC) and Tall X Tall (TTC). DTC is early bearing and high yielding, requiring a high level of inputs and management practices. It has been widely publicized and planted in small-holdings in the APCC region. TTC is high yielding but la te  bearing, requiring  less inputs and p la n ted  only in a limited  scale. The performance of the DTC in small-holdings has been below the expectations. It is attributed to the inability of the farmer to provide inputs and management skills, susceptibility of the cultivar to diseases and to technical disadvantages associated with the fruit. TTC is more suitable for cultivation in the small holdings being less susceptible to pests and diseases and tolerating  a wide env ironmental range. Intercropping  should be practised  during the long unproductive period of TTC. Generally, the efforts made to increase coconut production in small-holdings have given unsatisfactory results due to the use of inappropriate technology. Development has to be based on a system of organic farming, rather than inorganic as at present. Coconut monoculture is not acceptable  today. Productivity  from  the land has to be maximized. Popularization of improved cultivars has to be based on approriate  technology and satisfactory  marketing  facilities for the produce.

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