Mugu, Aug. 25 -- A decade ago, Hari Rokaya of Talcha farmed three cereal crops in his plot, but now he has turned the patches into an apple orchard.

Rokaya who harvested traditional crops to make ends meet for just three months in a year now earns half a million from selling apples, every year.

Rokaya's neighbour, Karna Bahadur Bham has also followed suit and planted 300 apple trees in what once was cropland. Bham garners Rs 400, 000 annually by selling the sweet-fruit in the local market.

Traditional crop farmers have started growing apples because of higher returns, allowing them to cover living expenses.

Expansion of rural road network through various settlements in Mugu has allowed the farmers to cash in from apple farming as trad...