Even as northern states, including Punjab, have witnessed better rainfall this season as compared to previous years, farmers are worried about the yield of their kharif crops. The agriculture department officials say in comparison to previous years, the amount of rainfall was better this monsoon. Also, there was enough sunshine as required by the crop, another positive sign promising a good yield.
“Around 20% more rainfall has been recorded this season as compared to the previous year. The heavy showers also neutralised insects. As a result, those growing the most common 1121 variety of paddy had to use minimal insecticides,” said agriculture development officer (ADO) Gurdeep Singh.
As far as the yield is concerned, it is too early to predict, but the present conditions are favourable for the paddy crop, he said. “Also, infestation is at its least. In view of this, the yield may be better than the previous year. Therefore, the farmers need not worry,” he said.
However, most paddy fields in Majha region can be seen dried up, causing worry to the growers. They say in absence of much rain, they have to irrigate the fields using tubewells.
Tajinderpal Singh, a farmer from Rasoolpur village in Tarn Tarn, said, “If no rainfall is witnessed in the next 10 days, the crop may be attacked by the worm that eats up the leaves. In such a situation, we will have to spray chemicals.”
“Due to inadequate rainfall, other crops such as bajra and chilli will also be infested. Too much of the sunshine is also a cause of worry,” said Kartar Singh, a farmer from Chabba village in Amritsar.
Agricultural experts said farmers should not be afraid of the weather, as showers are expected in the end of August and beginning of September. These showers have the ability to neutralise the worms that attack the crop, they said.