The system of rice intensification (SRI) method of cultivating paddy crop has gained momentum in Krishnagiri district. Out of the total number of 762 villages, 688 villages have adopted the SRI method in Shoolagiri Panchayat Union, said Collector T.P. Rajesh here on Wednesday.
Mr. Rajesh said that ninety per cent of the farmers in Parthakottai, A. Kothur, Keeranapalli, T.G.M. Kotta, Koneripalli and Pillaikothur villages in Shoolagiri block are in favour of the method.
“SRI, a proven technology for increased production of paddy than the conventional method of paddy cultivation has gained momentum in Krishnagiri district,” he said.
So far, the SRI method of cultivation of paddy has been adopted in 7,200 hectares during the current financial year. Another 11,650 hectares would be covered during the Samba and Navarai seasons.
Under this method the yield per hectare is around 9,200 kg, i.e. 50 per cent higher than yield of 6,100 kg per hectare under the conventional method of cultivation.
Sustained efforts are being taken to improve the area of paddy cultivation under the SRI method. The department has planned to bring 66 per cent of the total area of cultivation under SRI method.
Farmers who were sceptical about this method have not only adopted it but also propagated its advantages among other farmers in Pillaikothur, said a progressive farmer, Rajappa, of Pillaikothur village.
Mr. Rajappa said that under the SRI method, the yield per hectare is 10 to 15 bags higher than that in the conventional method of cultivation. It requires only a minimum quantity of fertilizers, water and fewer labourers.
The Regional Research Station, Paiyur, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, has advised farmers to undertake cultivation of nine high-yielding varieties of rice such as Ankur Sonam, Sonalika, Silky Sona, BPT 5204, Sona Masuri, Paiyur — 1, ADT 39, KRH 2 and CO RH 3. S. Radhakrishnan, Joint Director, Department of Agriculture was present on the occasion.