The failure of pre-monsoon showers had caused a lull in all farming works in the district
In the last 13 days, Mysuru district has received 43.5 mm rainfall that can be classified as ‘above normal’ as against the expected 36.4 mm. This is likely to encourage farmers to increase the agricultural activities in the district.
There had been a lull in cultivation related works in recent months owing to the failure of pre-monsoon showers. The district had received 163.5 mm of rainfall from January so far this year as against the expected 245.8 mm of rainfall.
Change in pattern
For the past few years, the district has been witnessing plentiful pre-monsoon showers. It had received over 29.7 mm rainfall during the months of January, February and March in 2015. This year however, for the same period, the district received just 10.8 mm rainfall. This had discouraged farmers from conducting agricultural activities. In the previous years, farmers had already sown Bt cotton, pulses such as black gram, green gram and cowpea, and oilseeds such as sunflower and sesame, by this time.
Mr. M. Mahanteshappa, Joint Director of Agriculture, told The Hindu on Tuesday that sowing is yet to pick up in the district. He hoped that the rains in the last 12 days would encourage the farmers to take up sowing. “So far, sowing has been completed in over 1,68,107 hectares of land, including rain-fed and irrigated land, as against the target of 3,88,220 hectares,” he said.
Cultivation of pulses
Mr. Mahanteshappa added that by this time last year, pulses such as green gram, black gram, cowpea, red gram were grown in over 92,800 hectares, while this year the same are being cultivated in 34,450 hectares only.
Sowing of hybrid jowar, cotton, tobacco, ground nut, apart from pulses, had also come down this year owing to the failure of pre-monsoon rains; he said and noted that sowing was carried out only in 61 per cent of the total targeted area.
Cotton is being grown in just 34,300 hectares as against the target of 47,800 hectares. Similarly tobacco is being grown in 65,700 hectares as against the target of 70200 hectares.
Mr. Mahanteshappa added that sowing of green gram and black gram could not be taken on hereafter for the season, as there still was time for cowpea, horse gram and avare.
He was confident that sowing would be carried in all the targeted areas in the coming days. He claimed that the agriculture officers have been instructed to make field visits and help and educate farmers about scientific cultivation.