Summer rain brightens kharif prospects

By Times Of India on 21 Jun 2018 | read
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Coimbatore: Agriculture produce in the district may get a shot in the arm this year. The agriculture department expects kharif cultivation to go up by 50% as the district received heavy rainfall this summer. A majority of the farmers completed their soil preparations in April and have begun sowing. They say if light rainfall continues till September, it will be beneficial for the season’s grains and pulses.

Agriculture officials estimate the area under cultivation of at least three crops to increase by 50% this summer. Bajra millet, which is cultivated in around 2,000 hectares in the district during this season, is expected to be cultivated in 3,400 hectares.


Cow pea, which is usually cultivated in around 350 hectares in Anamalai hills during the summer, is likely to be cultivated in 800 hectares this year. “Good rainfall in the catchment areas in the Western Ghats has made farmers in Anamalai hills and the Mettupalayam area positive,” said deputy director of agriculture Jayashree. S Bhoopalakrishnan, a farmer in Anamalai, says he used to cultivate cow pea in half of his 8-acre farm land during dry summers. “But now I have decided to cultivate cow pea in only one acre and sesame seeds in another three acres. But most of the neighbouring farms have sowed a lot of cow pea last month. Ours is a region that cultivated paddy but lack of rain killed our crops over the years,” he said.


Groundnut, which is also a popular kharif crop usually cultivated in the Coimbatore-Pollachi belt and in Karamadai, is expected to be cultivated in more than 1,400 hectares this season. “Groundnut is usually cultivated in around 1,000 hectares, but till June itself this year the acreage crossed 1,200 hectares,” said Jayashree. “While farmers in Pollachi have begun cultivation, farmers in Karamadai are expected to start sowing anytime now,” she added. “Last year I cultivated groundnut in 3 acres in my 10-acre farm land, but this year I cultivated five acres because the yield will definitely be good due to excess moisture in the soil,” said M Karuppusamy, a groundnut farmer at Sulakkal village.


Green gram, which is cultivated in around 120 hectares in Annur, is expected to cross 200 hectares this year.


 

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