27 Mar 2015


Beyond Apprehensions: An experience of System of Cumin (Cuminum cyminum) Intensification.

Vallabhbhai Madhabhai Nakum from village Nandana in Kalyanpur block of Devbhoomi Dwarka District in Gujarat (India) became our pioneer small farmer to adopt apparently alien technology. It all started after our confidence which we gained with Cotton SRI in the same region of Aga Khan Rural Support Programme-India suggested that we to expand to other crops too. As previously mentioned by me in my blog, the region is affected by salinity of soil and water, both being close to the coastal line of extreme western India.

The farmer initially was having apprehension about adoption of SRI Cumin, but he agreed for a small area of 100 square meters (the risk in a smaller area is less, and I myself was not confident for cumin). As every time, the SRI technique challenged my logical conventional thinking and paradigm; but the production as usual turned out to be better in comparison to traditional methods. I shifted from diffidence to confidence thanks to appealing field results and the efforts taken by our AKRSP-I team in the field and the farmers. I was wrong every time and wrong for the cause of small and marginal farmers.

The basic package of practices involved in SRI started with preparation of land by chisel plough and leveling. The plot was then enriched with FYM mixed with Amrit Pani, a locally made input constituted of gram flour, neem leaves, calotropis leaves, jaggery and water, kept in air-tight earthen pot for 12 days. The seeds for SRI were soaked in 1% Amrit Pani solution for 3 hours and then dried in the shade. The light-weight seeds were removed when the seeds were soaked in the solution. After the seeds dried, they were sown with point placement in square pattern at a distance of 30*30cm. (In traditional plots, seeds are broadcasted.) 25 days after germination the first weeding was done with a small tool between the rows and columns, and Amrit Pani was sprayed in a 1% solution. This activity was carried every time there was weeding. Spraying of Amrit Pani was done at intervals of 15 days.


Rather than talk further, the table below makes details clear, and the pictures speak thousands of words. In the table, the cost of cultivation was also calculated to include weeding, and the seed price was based on local situation.

S.N
Details of farmer
SRI
Traditional
1
Date of sowing
3rd December, 2014
3rd December, 2014
2
Date of harvesting
28 February, 2015
28 February, 2015
3
Area
100 square metre
100 square metre
4
Spacing
30*30 cm
Broadcasting
5
Seed Rate in gm
2
50
6
Urea
No
10 kg
7
FYM
100 kg Amrit Khad (FYM treated with Amrit Pani)
100 kg Amrit Khad (FYM treated with Amrit Pani)
8
Amrit Pani formulation
sprayed 4 times
Not sprayed
9
1st Weeding (time taken in Minutes)
20
40
10
2nd Weeding (time taken in Minutes)
25
40
11
3rd Weeding (time taken in Minutes)
25
40
12
Variety
Gujarat 4
Gujarat 4
13
Biomass weight of a sample 1*1 m plants
200.2 Gram
144 Gram
14
Average no of Seeds per plant (of 10 randomly selected plants) ~rounded up
562
247
15
Test weight of 1000 seeds
2.4 gram
1.6 Gram
16
Average tillers in 10 plants (rounded up)
11 main tiller 6 second tillers
8 main tillers and 3 second tillers
17
Average Length of 10 plants (rounded up)
12 cm
10.5 cm
18
Yield of 100 sqm in kilogram
7.9
4.8
19
Projected yield per hectare in kilograms##
790
480
20
Returns from Yield @ Rs. 140kg
1106
672
21
Cost of production (weeding labor, amrit pani, fertilizers, FYM, seeds included)
43.75
245
22
Profit to farmer
1062.25
427
## National Average  is 430 kg/hectare


Vallabhbhai in his Traditional Cumin Plot

Vallabhbhai in his SRI-Cumin plot 
Phenotypic Comparison of SRI and Traditional Plants



Seed Yield in SRI and Traditional when taken in one square meter area

1 comment:

  1. Thanks Gurpreet for sharing experiences of SCI in Cumin. In AKRSPI, we have more and more solid experiences of SCI on different crops. In the second photo, it looks like there is more space provided, but if you can share subsequent plant growth stage photos ( with age of the plant details), it would be clearer .We have also very encouraging experiences of two farm made products “Amrit Pani” and “Amrit Khad”. In this case also, both the products have their impact along with major response of SCI principles. Please share more on them.

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