Now, Indian farmers can grow paddy within days of harvesting their wheat crops — and that, too, without ploughing the field.
This will enable farmers to save two weeks of ploughing time and 35 per cent of water, leading to savings of Rs 30,000 per hectare of farmland.
Scientists at the CSA University of Agriculture & Technology in Kanpur, a premier government-run education and research institute, have developed this new “zero tillage” technique, which also rids the soil of weeds.
“This technique make the hitherto insurmountable achievable,” said V.P.N. Singh, research director of the Rastriya Krishi Vikas Yojna at CSA University, adding that it will also improve yields by 5-10 quintals per hectare.
Following successful field trials in three blocks of Kanpur Dehat in Uttar Pradesh, the new technique has gone “live” in three districts — Kanpur Dehat, Kanpur City and Kannauj — in central Uttar Pradesh.
It will spread across the rest of north India over the next few years and can, potentially, more than double farmer incomes from Rs 20,000 per hectare to more than Rs 40,000 per hectare.
“Zero tillage means there is no activity on field, the moisture level present in soil is maintained. Seeds of new crops germinate with the help of the ambient moisture in the soil,” said Singh.
“We have selected a new weedicide known as sulpho-sulphura. It will be sprinkled on the land along with other weedicides to remove weeds completely, Singh added.