Protection of rubber plants from the severe summer forms the main cultural operation during March.
Ensure that the shades provided to the young plants are intact and sufficient, to provide enough shade during the summer season.
If necessary, provide irrigation to the nursery plants in the morning and evening. If enough irrigation to drench the nursery beds can be given, watering may be limited to once a week. Very large nurseries can be divided into several plots and irrigated in cycles to cover each plot at least once a week.
Pruning of young shoots from the main stem on budded plants should be done using a sharp knife. All off - shoots arising within 2.4 meters from the ground level in both seedlings and budded plants have to be pruned taking care not to affect the growth of the plants by removing too many leaves. When pruning is done in the early stages there is no need to apply wound dressing compound. No branches should be allowed to grow
in the stem region where tapping panel has to be opened later.
Dried seeds of cover crop (Pueraria) is collected during this period.
Rainguarding enables tapping of the rubber trees in the rainy season. Fixing rain guards on rubber trees should be initiated before the commencement of rainy season during the month of March-April, so as to enable tapping in the following rainy season. The most popular and cheapest method of rain guarding is use of polythene sheets. Polythene sheets of 300 gauge, 45 cm wide cut to size to cover the tapping panel and the cup used for collection of latex are fixed to the trees using pins and paste just above the tapping panel. Leaving 10 cm on either side of the panel, scrape the bark in a 4 cm wide band, 10 cm above and parallel to the tapping panel to make it smooth. Apply the paste (Bitubest or Polystik) thickly on the scraped area. Then fix the polythene sheets of sufficient length, over the bitumen paste. Press a rough cloth band cut 2 cm wide with sufficient length onto the top of the polythene sheet and fix it to the bark using stapler pins. Apply another coat of the paste over the cloth band in order to prevent entry of water inside the polythene sheet and into the tapping panel.
In order to control the leaf spot disease on the seedlings in nurseries, Bordeaux mixture 1% or Indofil / Dithane M 45 (2.5g / l) may be applied.