March 15, 1971.
MULTIPLE CROPPING PATTERNS FOR
THE RICE TRACT OF PUNJAB
Dr. Muhammad Manzoor Khan
A Report submitted to
The Rice Improvement Advisor
The Ford Foundation, West Pakistan and
The Rice Botanist
Government Rice Farm, Kala Shah Kaku
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
The author is an employee of the Ford Foundation, through the International Rice Research Institute, Philippines, in West Pakistan. Before that he was a post-doctoral fellow in the multiple cropping project of the International Rice Research Institute, Philippines. He obtained his degree of Doctor of Philosophy in soils from the University of the Philippines in 1969. He graduated with his M.Sc. and B.Sc. degrees in Soil Science from the West Pakistan Agricultural University, Lyallpur, in 1963 and 1961 respectively.
At present, he is working as an Agronomist with the Ford Foundation in western Pakistan. In addition to conducting regular experimental research at the Government Rice Research Farm, Kala Shah Kaku using multiple cropping techniques in rotation with rice, he is also attempting to find out the possibilities of introducing multiple cropping techniques in various other regions of Pakistan.
The term "multiple cropping" as is used in this report involves diversified crop production and intensive land use techniques.* In other words (1) maximum possible number of crops, with(2) maximum possible yield, on(3) a given piece-of land, in(4) a given year, or combination of(l) crop rotations,(2) relay-interplanting and(3) mixed cropping.
The system has a definite scientific planned order in which crops follow one an other, or the growing of two or several crops mixed to gether. The soil management techniques involve minimum tillage practices. The crops are grown on beds in order to obtain an effective use of fertilizer and an economic use of irrigation waters as both of these ingredients are applied close to the rootzones.
.The farm labor is equally distributed throughout the year and
there is no extreme demand for it at the times of planting or harvesting. The produce offers less problems for marketing and storage as the gap in the time between harvests of a -crop is decreased by having different dates of plantings.
The farmer practicing multiple cropping are generally more secure financially than those practicing single crop husbandry. Moreover, a wider variety of crop produced on the farm ensures better. nutrition for the farmer and the people in the country.
LOCATION OF THE EXPERIMENTAL AREA
The area for conducting regular experimental research is located at the Government Rice Station, Kala Shah'Kaku which is situated near Lahore at 31N latitude. ,The general soil variations in the area are very
great. It contains a greater, quantity of silt and has an impervious
sub--soil at 12 feet depth which runs very uneven. The .rainfall in the area is less than 15 inches per annum. Temperature generally ranges from its average minimum of 38.40F in December to its. average maximum
of 107 F in June. The main crop of rice is grown between early June and late October. The temperature in winter is too cold. to raise a rice crop.
Canal water is only available for the rice crop. The soils and climatic conditions, however, permit one to raise several other crops.
Normal crops of wheat, gram, .oilseed and pulses can be grown without much difficulty with the extra w e.: available from tubewells. It is fortunate that the temperature gradient in the month in-February, March and. April are close to that in the month of August, September and October. Thus crops of corn. and soyabeans can be raised in this rice tract in February planting instead.of August planting which is a rice growing season in the rice tract.
MULTIPLE CROPPING PATTERNS
Rice is the main kharif season crop for this area and is generally grown between early June and late October. The rest of the year is available for growing several other crops with the extra irrigation water available from tubewells.
Since the rice crop is planted on puddled soils and underflooded
conditions, the after-rice-soil is, generally a compact and structureless. It creates drainage and aeration problems in addition to many other nutritional disorders for upland crops. A few progressive farmers are
managing to grow a crop of wheat, gram or some types of oilseeds, but many others do not grow a second crop. Thuis hundreds of thousands potentially productive acres are burning up their organic matter content in the direct sun shine, multiplying weed seeds, and are being robbed off its valuable inorganic, plant food materials with no return. The raising oilseeds and pulses is critically needed. Experiments have been conducted at the rice farm to grow a variety of these crops in conjunction with rice. A tentative set of rotations are given below. Some of these rotations have proved successful. Others are being tested. The landmaster tractor and its ancilliaries are employed for tilling operations and other soil management practices. The general crop management practices do not involve inputs other than those common with the farmers. The soil management techniques used here, however, involve a new set of improved techniques used in some other rice growing areas of the world.
A. 1 Rice gram corn Rice2
2 Rice, mustard sunflower' Rice2
--!(Raya L -9
3 Rice mustard. corn Rice2
4 Rice wheat sunflower Rice2
B. 5 Rice, ? soybean Rice2
6 Rice1 Mango
---- Corn Rice2
7 Ricel,_ ? Mango
1 --- Sunflower Rice2
In rotation No. 1, for example, 3 rows of rice were planted on flat beds 21 feet wide with a ridge on both sides. (See sketch on next page). The plant population of rice, on the bed was mintained in such
Rice gram ----- corn ricQ2
(i). Three rows of ricei on flat beds:
(ii). Two rows of gram planted on ridges after rice harvest:
(iii). Two rows of gram and a .shallow furro.,
(v). Ridging up of corn after removing gram:
(vi). Planting rice2 after the-haivest of corn:
.a -- 'r-r . .,". .~ '.- --.r rf.
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a way that the middle row had plant to plant spacing of 9 inches. The other,two rows had plant to plant distance 6 inches. The higher population in the outer two rows will thus compensate for the missing row due to the presence of a ridge, and the ridge space will, however, produce a border effect. Rhe field will have a normal plant population, thus a normal yield can be obtained.
When rice, is harvested, the flat portion is still wet but the ridges are well-drained and can be prepared. right away for planting with gram, i.e. cultivate only the ridges, flatten themso as to plant. two rows of the gram 15 inches apart. When the flatt portion drains, plough under therice stubles using the rotovator blades and leave a shallow furrow in the middle. When the gram crop is 35-40 days old, wriden this furrow and use it. if desired, for irrigational purposes.
Gram will be ready for use as a green vegetable by the middle of March (one may mature this crop if he likes). However, in case one likes to harvest them green, then give a light irrigation in furrows somewhere about the 28th of January and prepare then furrows for planting with corn between 8th to 10th of February. The corn will grow with gram. for almost 35-40 days. Normally there would not be serious competition between corn and gram for sun light and other food nutrients at this stage of growth.
When gram is harvested in the middle of March, the corn crop
will be ridged up later taking the extra soil from the beds where from gram were removed. Thus the corn crop rows will be 3 feet apart. Maintaining plant to plant space of 5 inches a normal plant population can be obtained for corn as a grain crop. In case one wishes to harvest corn
cobs as fresh corn, maintain a plant to plant distance of 10 inches.
The corn crop is growing on the ridges which are 3 feet apart, and are maintained even after the harvest of corn crop. The between rows distance, which is 2 feet can be prepared and planted to rice2 as the rice1 was planted. This rotation gives one rice, one crop of pulses and one crop of corn in about 11 months.
In rotation No.2, for example, rice1 was harvested on November 8th. It was flat sown on puddld soil as commonly done by the farmers. The rice field was cultivated., rotovated and leveled. Raised beds, 3 feet apart, with a furrow on both sides were prepared. (See sketch on next page.) Two rows of Raya L-18, a variety of mustard, were seeded on the top of the bed at a distance of 15 inches between rows. The seed germinated in the residual soil moisture left after rice. The first irrigation for Raya L-18 was made in the furrows when the crop was 25 days old. Pods formation commenced in early February. When 50% of its pod formation was completed, a light irrigation in furrow was again made. Later, the furrow portions were cultivated, fertilized with all of its phosphorus and potassium and 1 of its nitrogen and were planted one
half to corn and other half to sunflowers. Both corn and sunflower will grow with Raya mustard up to March 30,, i.e. the corn and sunflower will
grow with raya crop for about 40 to 45 days.
When the Raya crop is harvested, the corn and sunflower crops will be ridged. The other 1/2 of the nitrogen will be applied at this time. Corn and sunflower willmature around May 30. After the harvest of the crop the ridges will be maintained as such. i The between ridges distance of 21 feet will be dry cultivated, fertilized, flooded and
Rice Mustard Sunflower ------ Rice2
1 Ray! L-18
(i). Three rows of rice, planted on flat beds 3 feet apart:
(ii). Two rows of mustard planted on ridges after rice harvest:
(iii). One row of sunflower planted with mustexd on February 20:
(iv). Ridging up sunflower after mustard harvest:
(v). Planting rice after the harvest of sunflower:
Wi \1/ N \' dI IL.K" 7
planted to rice2 as in rotation No. 1. This rotation produces one rice and two oilseed crops in about 11 months. Rotation No. 3, similarly produces one rice, one oilseed, and one corn crop in 11 months. In rotation No. 4. for example, rice was flat sown on puddled soil. After its harvest the land was cultivated, rotovated and leveled. Raised beds were prepared at a distance of 3 feet between beds. Three rows of wheat, Mexi-Pak, were seeded on the top. When the wheat crop was 75-80 days old and was nearing panicle initiation, a light irrigation was given in the furrows in preparation for planting with sunflower. The sunflower crop planted at this stage will remain with the wheat crop for 40-45 days.
When the wheat crop is harvested, the sunflower will be bedded. The sunflower crop will mature on or around May 30. The ridges will be maintained at the time of the harvest of the sunflower. The between ridges portion which is about 21 feet will be prepared for planting to rice2 as riceI was planted in rotation No. 1. This rotation gives one rice, one wheat and one oilseed crop in 11 months period.
Similar techniques have been used in rotations No. 5, 6, and 7. These rotations are, however, incomplete and need to fit in some more
crops in future. See sketch on page 10 showing mung and corn, and mung and sunflower growing together when planted at the same planting date.
ROT'ATION : Rice -Wheat ------ Su flower ------ Rice2
(i). Three rows of rice1 are 3 feet apart on flat beds:
(ii). Three tows of wheat are planted on raised beds after harvest of rice:
(iii). One row of sunflower is planted in furrows between wheat on March 10:
(iv). Bedding back on the sunflower after the harvest Of wheat:
(v). Plant three rows of rice2 after the harvest of sunflower:
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ROTATION NO. 6: Rice -.'---. ? Mung ------.Rice
(1). Mung and corn planted at the same time but under different
land management techniques:
ROTATION NO. 7:
? Mung ------ Rice2
Mung and sunflower planted at the same time in the same field but under different soil management techniques:
RESULTS AMD DISCUSSIONS
Gram crop in rotation No. 1 has been harvested as green
(vegetable). It was variety C-612. The harvest produced 150 maunds of green stalk per acre. The market rate of vegetable gram such as these was 25 paisa per seer between March 10 and 20, the same gram was selling in streets at rate of 36 paisa per seer. Using a conservative rate of 18 paisa per seer, the gross income amounts to Rs. 1,080 per acre which is quite a profitable amount from a crop of five months duration, mostly grown with residual moisture left after rice. The interplanted crop of corn was one month old on March 10 when the gram was harvested. The results of other rotations are not yet available. The field conditions of
these crops are excellent.