Timely supply of water helps paddy farmers hit by two bleak seasons

After two consecutive bleak rabi seasons, paddy was sown in above 85,000 hectares as against 1.2 lakh hectares of normal rabi acreage in Krishna district, owing to timely availability of irrigation water supply. However, cereals are being grown in the remaining areas in selective parts of the district.

The modernisation work of canals across the district impacted the rabi crop and agricultural produce since 2011 due to delay in completion of the work. This led to thousands of hectares of fertile land literally being not used for agriculture activity, pushing farmers in the tail-end areas of the irrigation projects to opt for migrating from the place.

Without precedent

The sowing operations were delayed by at least two weeks this season. “Paddy was sown directly in an unprecedented 35,000 hectares, instead of raising nurseries. It was the only way explored and suggested to the farmer to minimise input cost and increase the total yield,” Krishna District Agriculture Department Joint Director Balu Naik told The Hindu.

He added that this season has witnessed maximum acreage of direct sowing process in any given rabi season as the farmers realized good results of the method. The direct sowing, which saves a month’s time required to raise a nursery, avoids facing extreme temperature condition as the harvesting is expected by April.

The sandy soil in Nagayalanka, Avanigadda, Challapalli to Machilipatnam, Bantumilli and Mudinepalli perfectly helps the growth of paddy that is sown directly. Sowing operations will be completed within a week’s time in every nook and corner, with proper access to irrigation water.