Commercial crops cover 91 p.c. of the target area, pulses 74 p.c.

Sowing of key kharif crops — coarse cereals, pulses, oilseeds and commercial crops — has been completed in over two-thirds of the normal area in the wake of continued widespread rain in July in many parts of the State.

Sowing of commercial crops has been completed in 91 per cent of the target area followed by pulses in 74 per cent, oilseeds 65 per cent, and coarse cereals in 59 per cent of the target area, according to officials in the Agriculture Department.

In contrast, paddy has been sown in less than half of the target area and the transplantation will go on till early September.

Sowing has been completed in more than 60 per cent of targeted area in 23 districts, highest of 97 per cent in Haveri followed by Gulbarga (95 p.c.), and Udupi and Bidar (94 p.c. each).

Sowing has been completed in less than 50 per cent in seven districts — Hassan (44 p.c.), Kodagu (43 p.c.), Mandya (15 p.c.), Chamarajanagar (41 p.c.), Tumkur (26 p.c.), Kolar (39 p.c.) and Bangalore Urban (34 p.c.). Area covered under kharif crops was 51 lakh hectares (ha), 68 per cent of the target of 74.29 lakh ha, as on July-end. Acreage during the corresponding period last year was 35.22 lakh ha.

Among oilseeds, soya bean has been sown in 2.44 lakh ha, more than the target area (2.42 lakh ha, about 37 p.c. more than last year (1.78 lakh ha). Among commercial crops, the coverage of cotton was 60 per cent more than the last season 2.181 lakh ha. Cotton has been sown in 4.5 lakh ha against the target of 4.73 lakh ha.

The State received 349.73 mm rainfall in July against the normal 277.7 mm. All four regions — south interior Karnataka, north interior Karnataka, coastal and Malnad — received excess rain. All major reservoirs are filled to the brim.

Cereals

Area under cereals has seen an increase of nearly 21 lakh hectares, driven by higher sowing of jowar, maize and bajra. The coverage during the corresponding period last year was a meagre 13.74 lakh hectares.

The maize area stood at 10.35 lakh ha, covering 87 p.c. of the target of 11.92 lakh ha. Coverage of paddy was 3.75 lakh ha, jowar 1.42 lakh ha, ragi 2.34 lakh ha, bajra 2.54 lakh ha and minor millets: 0.17 lakh ha.

Pulses

The surge in sowing pulses is primarily led by green gram, black gram and cowpea. Pulses acreage was 11.73 lakh ha against the target of 15.87 lakh ha. Coverage of red gram was 6.98 lakh ha, green gram 2.29 lakh ha and black gram 0.81 lakh ha.

Oilseeds

Coverage of oilseeds stood at 8.33 lakh hectares against the target of 12.82 lakh ha. Groundnut acreage was 3.74 lakh ha, constituting 55 per cent of the target area. The percentage coverage of sesamum was 69, sunflower 63, castor 37, niger 23, mustard 14 and soya bean 101.

Commercial crops

Led by cotton, commercial corps have been sown in 9.65 lakh ha against the target of 10.55 lakh hectares. Sugarcane acreage is 4.17 lakh ha, cotton 4.5 lakh ha and tobacco 0.98 lakh ha. Officials said 9.66 lakh tonnes of fertilizer and 7.03 lakh quintals of seeds have been distributed to farmers as of July-end.

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