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Fresh snow in higher hills, cold wave worries stonefruit growers

With high-altitude areas receiving fresh snowfall, stonefruit farmers are worried due to the hailstorms that lashed the mid-altitude hills and lower parts of the state.

punjab Updated: Feb 19, 2015 19:38 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Shimla,snowfall,stonefruit farmers

With high-altitude areas receiving fresh snowfall, stonefruit farmers are worried due to the hailstorms that lashed the mid-altitude hills and lower parts of the state.


On Thursday the higher reaches received a fresh spell of snow that sent the mercury plummeting. The lower temperatures have worried several stonefruit farmers especially almond growers. The higher altitude areas of Kinnaur, Lahaul & Spiti, Shimla, Kullu and Chamba have been receiving intermittent snow.

Hailstorms also pounded orchards in the Ratnari and Baghi areas besides the Matiana and Fagu ranges. Mashobra and surrounding villages were also lashed by hailstorms that reportedly damaged vegetable crops in the area.

The sky remained overcast in Shimla that recorded a minimum temperature of 5.2 degrees Celsius while the tourist town of Manali, which received 7 cm of fresh snow, recorded a minimum of 1 degree C. Dharamsala was lashed with 10 mm of rain and recorded a minimum of 7 degrees.

During the past 24 hours Khadrala recorded 12 cm of snowfall, Keylong 9 cm and Kalpa in Kinnaur district 5 cm. The tourist town Narkanda received intermittent snow since morning. Kalpa recorded a minimum temperature of -7.2 degrees C while Keylong in Lahaul & Spiti district recorded a minimum of -2.9 degrees. Dalhousie recorded a minimum temperature of 1 degree C.

Several parts of lower hills were lashed with the fresh rains. Saloni recorded 41 mm of rainfall, Bhoranj 30 mm, Gohar 20 mm, Bijahi 19 mm, Shimla 15 mm, Hamirpur and Dalhousie each received 14 mm and Berthin and Sarahan each received 13 mm of rainfall.

The Shimla meteorological centre has predicted snow and rain at a few places in mid-altitude areas while snow in higher reaches in next 24 hours while rain and thunderstorm is expected in the next 24 hours in lower altitude areas of the state. "More rain and snow is expected in coming days. Fresh western disturbances are expected on February 23 and 24," Met director Manmohan Singh said.

Stonefruit farmers worried

Stonefruit cultivators, especially almond growers, are a worried lot due to the cold wave sweeping the region. However the moisture in the soil is must but the cold wave is considered as harmful for blossoms. Farmers in Shimla and Kullu districts have been growing stonefruits on a large scale and lower blossoming has started in the lower altitude areas of the region.

In Shimla district blossoming in almond trees has started in the lower parts of Kotgarh, Nirsu, Rampur, Nankhari and Kumarsain as well as in a few areas of Kotkhai and Rohru.

First Published: Feb 19, 2015 19:34 IST