Pomegranate flowers continuously when watered regularly.
The plants under such conditions may continue bearing flowers and bear small crop irregularly at different period of 37 the year, which may not be desirable commercially.
To avoid this trees are given bahar treatment.
- In this treatment, the irrigation is withheld two months prior to the bahar followed by light earthing up in the basin. This facilitates the shedding of leaves.
- The trees are then medium pruned 40-45 days after withholding irrigation.
- The recommended doses of fertilizers are applied immediately after pruning and irrigation is resumed.
- This leads to profuse flowering and fruiting. The fruits are ready for harvest 4-5 months after flowering.
In tropical condition, there are three flowering seasons,
- January-February (Ambe bahar)
- June -July (Mrig bahar)
- September-October (Hasta bahar).
The choice of flowering or fruiting is controlled by the availability of irrigation water, market demand, and the prevalence of pests and diseases in a particular area.
- To obtain an appropriate crop at the desired season.
- Control fruit production for consistency and quality.
- To increase both productivity and the grower’s profit.
- To lower cultivation costs because continuous uninterrupted blossom would result in light crops all year long and expensive monitoring and marketing expenses.
- In Deccan regions, when water is so limited in the summer, Mrig Bahar is practised
- Withholding watering for this treatment from December to April may result in significant growth inhibition. As the plants enter their dormant state in the months of march through April, leaves are shed.
- Before the rainy season begins, manures and fertilizers are sprayed, and light irrigation is followed by two significant irrigations spaced seven days apart.
- Trees will grow rapidly within 15 days, producing fruits and flowers and new growth. Fruits start to ripen in October and keep doing so until December.
- Ambe Bahar is practised in regions where water is available during hot weather. After the start of the wet season, no irrigation is provided, and the fruits are available in June and July.
- Manures are sprinkled in December and January. The first irrigation is provided in January, and within a month after this irrigation, flowers start to bloom.
- Ambe bahar has been discovered to be a more effective treatment than mrig bahar in the dry regions of western Maharashtra.
- Hasta Bahar is rarely practised. August through September must be used to make the trees dormant.
- This treatment is used from September to October, immediately following the end of the rainy season.
- The earlier rainy season causes the plant to accumulate more nitrogen and the soil to retain some moisture, preventing the plant from experiencing the water stress needed to promote flowering.
- Well-draining soils may be regarded as favourable for this treatment.
- This treatment is popular because it guarantees a high market price for the fruits.
- The fruits of hasta bahar have very appealing rind (skin) and dark-coloured arils, and they are picked from March through April.
- Fruits are expensive because there is a restricted supply during this season.
- Due to the timing of the irrigation restrictions and the rainy season, optimal water stress cannot be created during this time.
- Poor flowering results from this, which lowers the crop’s yield