What is Aerobic Rice Cultivation?

Aerobic rice cultivation is an advanced way of cultivation by reducing water wastage. In aerobic rice cultivation, rice is cultivated as direct sown in non-puddle aerobic soil under supplementary irrigation and fertilizer with suitable high yielding rice varieties.

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Aerobic Rice Cultivation in India

  • The aerobic rice cultivation system is the method of cultivation, where the rice crop is established by direct seeding (dry or water-soaked seed) in non-puddle field and un-flooded field condition
  • This type of cultivation is called aerobic because the soil contains oxygen throughout the growing season
  • The areas which are suitable to grow aerobic rice includes:
    • Upland areas and mid-upland where land is flat
    • Deep soils, which can supply water to the crop between rainfall events
    • Upper slopes or terraces in undulating areas
  • A seed rate of 50 kg per hectare is recommended for aerobic rice. The seeds are sown 20 cm between rows and 15 cm within rows with 3 to 5 cm depth

Principles of Aerobic Rice Cultivation System

There are set principles which need to be followed for Aerobic Rice cultivations system. Discussed below is the same methodology same in brief:

  • Direct seeding method of treated seed is used for this type of cultivation
  • It can be rain-fed or fully irrigated or supplementary irrigated
  • The water needs to be maintained at the soil saturation level only
  • Effective and timely weed control is mandatory for the successful cultivation
  • 20 to 25cm of row spacing must be followed

Advantages of Aerobic Rice Cultivation

Since this type of cultivation is done in the soil type with ample oxygen, the amount of water required is comparatively less for cultivation. Given below are a few other advantages of the aerobic rice cultivation system:

  • It is cost-effective and eco-friendly
  • Cultivation cost is also low and so are the labour charges
  • Direct Seeding
  • Efficient utilization of rainwater and improves soil health
  • This type of cultivation improves soil health

What are the requirements of Aerobic rice cultivation?

Aerobic rice cultivation suitable areas are lowlands that are irrigated, delta regions, irrigated systems of rice cultivation, etc.

What are the projected areas in India for cultivation?

Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, parts of Bihar, Odisha, Karnataka, and eastern Uttar Pradesh are the projected areas

What are the constraints associated with this form of cultivation?

Poorly managed fields may cause partial to complete failure of crop, which might happen due to weeds and micronutrient non-availability.

What is the difference between aerobic rice and upland rice?

Upland rice is grown in rainfed, naturally well-drained soil fields without surface water accumulation. Whereas, the aerobic rice system is targeted at more favourable environments where farmers can afford to buy external inputs such as fertilizers and have access to supplementary irrigation if rainfall is not sufficient.

When is rice cultivation done in India?

The Kharif season is the main rice-growing season in India. The sowing is done in the months of June and July and it is harvested in the winter season, around November and December.

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