‘Strategies are being worked out to boost productivity’
The Department of Agriculture is analysing the constraints leading to productivity gap in different major crops in the district as part of several measures recommended in its action plan 2012-13.
Studies identified the major constraints that are affecting the crop productivity are poor soil health, lack of efficient irrigation facility and water reach to tail-end areas, and low degree of farm mechanisation and inadequate extension.
In paddy cultivation, non-adoption of green manuring and grain legumes preceding rice in kharif and indiscriminate use of nitrogenous fertilizers and top dressing of complex fertilizers containing phosphorous apart from improper nursery management, low plant population, over aged seedlings, etc., are contributing to low paddy production. Another reason for low production is micro-nutrients, including zinc deficiency.
In the pulses crop, non-adoption of seed rate, and location specific high yielding varieties and non adoption of seed treatment and proper plant protection management were the reasons for poor production levels. Failure in application of phosphorous fertilizers and micro-irrigation systems are also the reasons for poor crop performance.
Poor mechanisation and management of stem and bud necrosis, non adoption of micro-irrigation systems and non-usage of quality seed, seed treatment and low usage of gypsum, were reasons for low productivity in oil seed cultivation.
The agriculture officers as part of measures to boost productivity levels suggested interventions at village and mandal levels using of green manure, reclamation of problematic soils and soil correction of micro-nutrient deficiencies. Some of the strategies recommended, including capacity enhancement for farmers on specific nutrient requirement for paddy, training farmers on over-aged seedlings management, supplying of paddy transplanting machines on subsidy, imparting training on weed and integrated pest management.
Joint Director of Agriculture K. Venugopala Rao told The Hindu that the constraints had been identified for low agriculture production and strategies were being worked out to tackle them and farmers were being educated on the steps that should be taken in this regard.