In Pakistan, sunflower was first introduced as an oilseed crop in 1960’s. Extensive research work on different aspects of this crop has continued since 1964. In 1970-71, about 666 and 4 hectares of sunflower were grown in Punjab and Sindh, respectively, with a total production of 482 tones. In 1987-88, the area under sunflower increased to 33,122 ha in Punjab, 9648 ha in Sindh, and 342 ha in NWFP, with a total production of 42,531 tones. On average, of the total tonnage, 76% is produced in Punjab, 21% in Sindh, and 3% in NWFP. The increase in area under sunflower has not been constant; rather, very drastic fluctuations took place during this period. For example, in NWFP in 1982-83 a maximum of 2750 ha was planted with sunflower, which gradually decreased to 71 ha in 1986-87. Although the area has been increased by several times, no major crop has been disturbed or replaced. Sunflower has shown good intercropping compatibility with other crops. The extraction of oil and processing by the present industry in the country and even at the village level by the farmer has further increased the prospects for sunflower production.
The crop is effected by following pests
Chewing pest Sucking/Sap Feeders Vertebrate pest
1.Hairy caterpillar 1.Thrips 1.Birds (Parrot)
2.Tobacco caterpillar 2.Jassid
3.Cabbage semilooper 3.White Fly
4.Head borer 4.Aphid
Written By: Sajid Aslam