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|Young Budded Root Trainer Rubber Plants|
Karshakasree K.C.Kuriakose made a revolutionary attempt to raise advanced planting materials of Hevea in polythene bags with no loss of initial roots resulting in better growth of plants and earlier tapping. This is known as "Cheerakuzhy Young Budded Rubber Plants". Facility for the selection of healthy plants of uniform growth and lesser casualty on out planting are also some of the other major advantages of Young Budded Rubber Saplings.
Recently, Rubber Research Institute of India has developed and introduced a little more advanced method of raising Brown Budded and Green Budded rubber saplings in polypropylene cups instead of polythene bags. These cups are called "Root Trainers". They have certain specific features like tapering or conical shape, vertical ridges, drainage hole at the bottom are all incorporated with the purpose of properly training the structural development of roots in a systematic manner and hence the cup is termed as "root trainer". Root trainers generally used have a length of 26cm with a volume of 600cc.
Successful introduction of root trainers for Hevea has inspired us to change our outlook in the nursery practices adopted for the Young Bud Poly Bag Nursery. It is a sophisticated propagation technique having great potentials in improving the physical quality of root system as well as reducing the time and cost required for the production of advanced planting materials. Taking these merits into consideration, Cheerakuzhy Young Bud Rubber Nursery is also making a set of experiments to develop Young Budded Root Trainer Rubber Plants on a large scale in co-operating with the Rubber Research Institute of India.
Under this method, the root trainers are filled with uniformly mixed potting mixture instead of soil. The potting medium is consisted of sieved and cured coir pith mixed with appropriate quantities of rotten cow-dung, bone-meal, rock phosphate etc. Then the root trainers are stacked in carriers made of iron rod or bamboo splints. After that germinated rubber seeds are planted directly in root trainers for raising the stock seedlings. These stock seedlings are subjected to Young Budding at second whorls stages i.e., on 28th day onwards after the germinated seeds were deposited in the root trainers. This process continues up to 60 days.
After the successful budding process, the Young Budded plants will be allowed to grow in the root trainer itself for 4 to 5 months. During this period, the tissues of the bud patch and the stock seedling will become firmly united within 3 or 4 weeks after budding. Thereafter, the stock seedling stem will be sawn off above the budded portion and the live bud grafts will be permitted to sprout in the root trainer till it attains the desired growth. Thus, by way of Young Budding, the plants in the root trainers get matured for cultivation within 9 months after sowing the seeds. All other cultural practices are adopted as in the case of Brown Budded and Green Budded Root Trainer Plants.
Merits of Young Budded Root Trainer Rubber Plants
In short, the well oriented root system of the Young Budded Root Trainer Rubber Plants will grow to a biologically desirable natural form right from planting to maturity. Thus, they possess excellent physical qualities also.