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Cropping Systems

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Rural Technology

cropping system may be defined as the order in which the crops are cultivated on a piece of land over fixed period.

The productivity of land is maintained or even increased through proper soil management practices. Much can be done to keep the soil in proper condition by establishment of crop rotations suited to the needs of the farm.

Crop Rotation: -

It may be defined as more or less systematic recurrent succession of crops on the same land.

Advantages of crop Rotation: -

1. Overall increase in the crop yield due to maintenance of proper physical condition of the soil and its organic matter content. 2. Inclusion of crops having different feeding zones and different nutrients help in maintaining a better balance of nutrients in the soil. 3. Diversification of crops reduces the risk of financial loss from unfavorable prices in the market, unfavorable weather conditions and damage due to pests and diseases. 4. It helps in more even distribution of labour. 5. Regular flow of income over the year. 6. Incidence of weeds, insects and diseases is reduced and can be kept under control. 7. Proper choice of crops in rotation helps to prevent soil erosion. 8. It supplies various needs of the farmers and his cattle. Some Examples of crop rotations are: Cotton – Jowar Cotton – Jowar – groundnut Cotton – Bajri Cotton- wheat or Rabi Jowar or gram Jowar mixed with pulse Sugarcane – cotton Sugarcane – Rabi Jowar sannhemp Rice - wheat- rice Wheat- maize - sugarcane i. Monoculture: - One major crop (Rice) which is grown on the same land year after year is known as monoculture or single crop system. The reasons for monoculture are: i) Cultivators holdings are very small and fragmented and no choice to cultivate many crops. ii) Main article of diet. iii) Most of the area under rice is low lying subject to water logging and mainly fit for rice and jute. iv) Track receives heavy rainfall and climatic conditions make the growing of any other crop almost impossible. Fallow in rotation: - In scarcity areas where rainfall is very low only two crops are taken in three years as against one crop every year. This results in increasing the yield of crop in succeeding year. Multiple cropping: - In single cropped irrigated areas double and triple cropping is being followed and there is possibility of taking even four crops in a year. An ideal system of multiple cropping should include such crops which should produce minimum problems of soil exhaustion and pest build up while ensuring maximum production or maximum returns per unit input to the farmer. Mixed cropping: - Age old practice followed under dry as well as irrigated farming, instead of growing several crops in separate fields by devoting one field to crop, the crops proposed to be grown are raised together in the same field. The cereal crops are usually mixed with legumes e.g. Jowar or Bajri mixed with Tur, Udid, Mung, matki or kulthi. Wheat is mixed with peas, gram or mustard. Cotton is mixed with Tur or Jowar. Many other mixtures are also common in which oilseeds, pulses, fibre crops and vegetable crops are included. Usually mixtures consist of only two crops one main and other subsidiary crop, but mixtures of three of four crops are also common. Objectives of mixed cropping:- i) Get handy instalments of cash returns in irrigated crops. ii) Better distribution of labour throughout the year. iii) Utilize available space and nutrients to the maximum extent possible. iv) To safe guard against the hazards of weather, disease and pests. the major crop, without affecting the plant population as well as yield of the major crop or growing two crops simultaneously with distinct row arrangement. In this system, in addition to yield of major crop some extra intercrop yield is obtained. Therefore intercrop is the bonus crop in this system e.g. intercropping of groundnut or vegetables in sugarcane or pulse or oilseed crops sorghum (Jowar) or pearl millet (bajra).

Intext Questions

Match the followings: A B i. Crop Rotation a) Two crops in three years. ii. Monoculture b) Four crops in a year. iii. Fallow in rotation c) Usually mixture consists of two crops. iv. Multiple cropping d) One major crop v. Mixed cropping e) Systematic recurrent succession of crops. 9.7 What you have learnt Seed treatment is done for control of disease, convenience in sowing, quicker germination, protection against insects and pests, inducing earliness and variation. Tissue culture is a technique of separation of cells or tissues or organs of a plant and growing them in vitro, under aseptic and controlled conditions to give rise to new individuals. Auxins, gibberellins, cytokinines, ethylene and inhibitors are important types of growth regulators. Monoculture, crop rotation, fallow in rotation, multiple cropping, mixed cropping, intercropping are the different cropping systems, which help in maintaining soil conditions and controlling pests and diseases on crop plants. 9.8 Terminal questions 1. What are the different objectives of seed treatment? 2. Define tissue culture and write the requirements of plant tissue culture. 3. Write in brief the methodology of tissue culture. 4. Write the uses of growth hormone. 5. Write the objectives of mixed cropping.

Answer to intext questions

9.1 1. Agrosan 2. Sulfuric acid 3. Hard seed coat 4. Kerosene 5. Endrin 9.2 1. multiplying 2. 0.5-1.0% 3. Meristem 4. Inoculation 5. Transplanted 9.3 A) Fill in the blanks 1. Gibberellins 2. Ethylene 3. Plant hormone 4. Cytokinines 5. Abscises Acid (ABA) 9.4 1. Systemic recurrent succession of crops 2. One major crop 3. Two crops in three years 4. Four crops in a year 5. Usually mixture consist of only two crops

Suggested activities

a. Visit to tissue culture laboratory and seedling establishments units. b. Visit to model agricultural farm for studying the cropping systems. c. Collect information on commercially used growth hormones.

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