System of rice intensification (SRI) is a well-known practice and followed
by many of the farmers. Under DST-Core support project Rural Communes introduced
SRI to the farmers and implemented it successfully. During the project, the team found
some difficulties in transplanting young sapling in the main field. Hence the discussion
with the farmers regarding the sowing of paddy seeds directly in the main field followed.
After the long discussion and consultation with the farmers it was decided to cultivate
paddy by direct seed sowing as a demonstration plot and if the demonstration was
successful then the intervention would be replicated with other farmers.
For demonstration we selected 12 farmers and 20 guntha plot of each farmer. Except
Nursery bed raising and transplanting, all the SRI principles were followed which are as
SRI is based on six management practices those are as below:
1. Seed selection and direct seed sowing: Selected Indrayani variety which is suitable in
the area and treated with salt water to avoid mortality.
3. Wide Spacing: Planted one or two seeds 25cm x 25cm apart. Rice plant roots and
canopies grow better if spaced widely, rather than densely. This exposes each plant to
more sunlight, air, and soil nutrients, and allows easier access.
4. Weeding and Aeration: Used simple kono weeder that churns up soil; 2 weedings
were done during 15 days interval which helped develop more root growth, also due to
reduced weed competition, aeration of soil and increased microbial activities roots
received more Oxygen and Nitrogen.
5. Water Management: Farmers took care of water level which kept the soil moist and
helped provide more nutrients to the plant.
6. Compost / FYM applied; Applied FYM of 10 tons/ha that improved the soil structure
and provided balanced nutrient supply. It thus, promoted healthy growth of paddy crop,
the root system grew well and gave 30 to 50 tillers.
After the analysis of traditional method and improved practices we observed that 45 to
55 tillers were formed and pinnacle were very heavy. In traditional method normally 10
to 15 tillers are formed. Due to direct seed sowing less labour was required, less time
and reduced drudgery and increase in average income of Rs. 15000 to18000 per acre.
Rural Communes has collected seeds and stored properly
in the campus from these plots for supplying to the farmers. Due to the
impact of intervention, farmers are motivated and willing to adopt improved
practices. They also started wheat cultivation by dibbling method, following the
process properly. The no. of farmers applying innovative methods in agriculture
increased and they came forward to ask for technical guidance.