he season’s first snowfall on Saturday early morning wreaked havoc to apple orchards in south Kashmir by causing widespread damage to the apple trees and the crop as well.
In the higher reaches of Shopian district, the damage to apple trees has been more severe as the fruit was still on the trees when snowfall hit the orchards on Thursday.
Officials have admitted that most apple orchards in the Shopian district have suffered damage because of the snowfall. While officials did not quantify the damage caused to the apple orchards in the valley, people of the affected areas said that 30 per cent of the apple trees have been damaged due to the early snow.
In most of these places, the trees have been flattened to the ground under the weight of the heavy fall. Horticulture is the biggest industry in Kashmir as nearly 22 lakh metric tonnes of apple are exported from the valley.
The weatherman has forecast wet weather in the region for the next 24 hours.