Raise paddy only in water fertile region, ryots told

Staff Reporter

PUDUKOTTAI: The Agriculture Department has advised the farmers in the district to take up paddy cultivation only in areas having excess irrigation water.

At an agriculture grievance day meeting held here on Friday, the officials told the farming community to cultivate oilseeds, millets and pulses in areas, which were having sufficient irrigation water, avoiding paddy cultivation, as these crops required less water. The farmers were asked to choose the crops according to the nature of the soil in their respective holdings.

It was informed during the meeting that 111 hectares have been covered under paddy cultivation in the district till now during 2005-06, while gingely and sugarcane had been cultivated in 215 and 166 hectares respectively, so far, in the district this year.

According to an official release, during the last financial year 95,324 hectares were covered under paddy cultivation, groundnut was raised in an area of 25,968 hectares. Pulses were cultivated in 10,432 hectares, sugarcane in 5,709 hectares and millets in 4,999 hectares. The district received a rainfall of 42 mm as against the normal level of 115.2 mm up to April this year, with the deficiency accounting to63.5 per cent.

In order to ensure the availability of quality fertilizer and pesticides, samples of 535 fertiliser and 582 pesticides would be collected from private and cooperative outlets for analysis this year. Sufficient quantity of fertiliser and pesticides were being stocked in private and cooperative outlets.

It has also been decided to take 7,000 soil samples for test in order to ascertain the status of the soil and advise the farmers apply fertiliser based on the results.Paddy seeds, at present, were under distribution with a subsidy of Rs.2 per kilogram.

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