Various factors influence agriculture, of which the important factors are climate, soil, terrain, topography, population density, economy, etc. So what do you think of possible changes due to the presence of the Himalayas in India?
We will get to know the influence of the Himalayas on Indian agriculture later in this article. But, till then let’s explore some amazing possibilities. When you think of the Himalayas, so what could you imagine? Mountains, high altitude, stones, hill stations, soil type, vegetation, rivers, cold climate, etc.
But how could all these things influence agriculture in the rest part of the country as the Himalayas are only present in the 13 Indian states? Let’s explore what happens due to the presence of the Himalayas in India.
Influence Of the Himalayas On Indian Agriculture
- Monsoon Rains: Can you think of a dry & arid deserted Indian northern plains like Rajasthan? well, that could have been a reality in the absence of the Himalayas in India. The Himalayas mountain range has the highest peaks in the world that act as a barrier to monsoon winds. Due to this reason, many districts of India receive monsoon rains, thus acting as source of irrigation water for farmers.
- Rivers: India’s largest river originates from Gangotri Glaciers which is in the Himalayan mountain range. Other important Indian rivers Indus & Brhamputra also originate from the Himalayas. In historic times many civilizations flourished alongside these rivers due to the presence of irrigation water. This is to some extent still relevant.
- Soil Fertility: Rivers originating from the Himalayas carry fertile alluvial soil with them that gets deposited on the river’s banks in the plains. Hence, it helps farmers living alongside these rivers to cultivate crops easily. Alluvial soils are light, porous & rich in minerals.
- Crop Variety Variation: India has primarily tropical to sub-tropical climates. Due to this reason, farmers can only cultivate tropical crops. But, due to the presence of the Himalayan range & its cool climatic conditions, temperate crops such as strawberry, Kiwi, apple, pear, peach, plum, apricot, cherry, almond, etc. can be practiced in this region.
- Medicinal Plants: The Himalayan range is the home of many precious medicinal plants in the world. Plants such as Ashwagandha, Brahma Kamal, Chirayeta, Cannabis, Cymbopogon, etc. can be easily grown in this range for medicinal & commercial purposes. Because of this advantage, Jammu & Kashmir located in the northwestern range of the Himalayas is the largest apple-producing Union territory of India.
- Medicinal Fungus: One of the most prized medicinal fungus “Cordyceps militaris” can be only grown in the Himalayan range. Cultivation of this medicinal fungus is not possible in plains under normal conditions. 1 Kilogram of Cordyceps cost around INR 4,50,000.
This fungus is known to possess potent bioactive compounds that can boost the immune system, improve cardiovascular health & enhance athletic performance. Its potential as an adaptogen and antioxidant has garnered significant interest in the healthcare and supplement industries.
As for its price and market, the value of Cordyceps militaris can vary significantly depending on factors such as the region of origin, quality & demand. Given its popularity and potential health benefits, the cost of Cordyceps militaris has been relatively high.
- Saffron Farming: Cultivation of saffron “the world’s most costliest spices” has been possible in India because of the presence of the Himalayan range. Because of the cool climatic conditions, terrain, topography & soil of the north-western Himalayas, India is the 2nd largest saffron-producing country in the world.
I guess now your concepts are clear on how the Himalayas influence Indian agriculture. If you have any ideas, queries or suggestions then please comment below. You can also connect with Agriculture Review on Facebook, Instagram & Koo.