Tulip Festival: Early flower bloom at Tulip Garden Srinagar

Tulip Festival: Early flower bloom at Tulip Garden Srinagar

Kashmir is witnessing increasingly hot weather at this time of the spring season, bringing cheers to floriculturists who expect an early bloom at the Tulip Garden in Srinagar.

The day temperatures in Kashmir are hovering around 25ºC, some 9-10 degrees above normal, for the past at least three days.

The rise in temperature is considered good for the early blooming of flowers meant for ornamentation and tourism, but bad for horticulture as it impacts the quality of fruits owing to fluctuating temperatures, experts say.

The heat factor, meanwhile, has prompted the bloom of flowering plants like hyacinths and daffodils and also some early blooming varieties of tulips at Srinagar’s Tulip Garden, one of the biggest in Asia where 1.5 million flowers will bloom this year.

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Sofi Inam-ur-Rehman, floriculture officer and in-charge of the Tulip Garden, said they did not expect such a rise in temperatures. “The flowering has started. Tulips are strange flowers. These will bloom instantly when the sun shines more. If the temperature goes down, the blooming stagnate,” he said. “Some early varieties have already started blooming along with hyacinths and daffodils,” he added.

Last year, the garden was opened on March 25 and this year it can happen early. “Keeping weather conditions in mind, we can expect an early bloom of 1.5 million flowers. The only thing is that the temperature should not fluctuate,” he added.

However, director, horticulture, Aijaz Ahmad said high temperatures are alarming for the fruit industry. “High temperatures are good for vegetable and cereal growth, but for horticulture, it is really bad and can prove catastrophic. It will lead to early bloom like we have that of almonds and if there is a slight fluctuation or drop in temperature, it will impact flowering, pollination, and then ultimately fruit formation,” he added.

The weather office said that Srinagar recorded 25.4ºC on Wednesday against a normal of 14.7ºC. The highest of 27.7ºC was witnessed in Kupwara where it should have been 14.2ºC at this time of the year under normal weather conditions.

“The main reason is the absence of a westerly weather system which otherwise used to be the case during this month,” said Srinagar-based meteorologist Mohammad Hussain Mir.

He said this was not something abnormal as these types of cyclical weather ups and down keep on happening. “In the rest of India, this month is hot weather season or pre-monsoon, but here it is spring. It has been after a few years that March so far has been hot and dry. A decade or two ago, we had seen more hot days in March,” he added.

Wet weather is likely this weekend
“There has been a rise in temperature for the past one week. The mercury is remaining high as there is an absence of western disturbance, but we are expecting wet weather on Saturday,” said another meteorologist Farooq Ahmad Bhat.

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