Farmers were urged to sow certified varieties paddy seeds at a training camp organised by Krishi Vigayan Kendra's deputy director(training) Mandeep Singh on Tuesday in Khetla village of the district.
Singh said farmers should sow basmati rice, to conserve ground water and advised farmers not to sow Pusa-44 paddy as it was a long-duration, water-guzzling and disease-prone variety.
He urged farmers to help conserve water by sowing only those paddy varieties that have been approved by the Punjab Agricultural University. "There are as many as 14 rice varieties to choose from depending upon the climate and soil zone," he said.
Farmers have been asked to opt for short-duration paddy varieties - such as basmati rice - that have higher yield potential, consume less water and mature in about 135 days from the date of sowing.
One such new variety is PR-124, which is semi-dwarf, is of short duration and has a yield potential of 30.5 quintals per acre. Other advised varieties are PR 123, PR 122, PR 121, PR 118 and PR 114.
Singh advised farmers to go in for seed treatment before raising paddy nursery to ward off bacterial blight and other diseases.
Certified varieties of basmati rice seeds were distributed among the farmers who attended the camp.