Friday, October 26, 2012

Manual for Cotton –Wheat Cropping System


Participatory Farmers’ Field Research for Enhancing Wheat Yield with Organic Farming in Punjab
An initiative of Kheti Virasat Mission
Under the aegis of
Centre for Sustainable Agriculture (CSA)
Alliance for Sustainable & Holistic Agriculture (ASHA) &
Organic Farming Association of India (OFAI)
 Punjab has been a leading state in India for high crop productivity for the past over 3 decades. Its farmers adopted all the components of the Green Revolution (GR) technology which is based on external inputs of synthetic fertilizers and synthetic pesticides. Government policies have played and are still playing a major role in taking Punjab farmers into the GR path. Negative aspect of the external input based GR technologies became apparent after about 30 years of their introduction during late 1960’s to early 1970s. The negative effects have been noted in terms of depleting aquifer, high nitrates in ground water, pesticide residue in blood of practicing farmers and the food they produce, and most recently reported uranium in people of some districts of Punjab and its indicated link with rock-phosphate based fertilizers, as per newspaper reports. Most of the negative effects of GR are well known in the world for long and have been noted in India for at least one decade. Well meaning NGOs, across the world, including in India, however, continue to criticize Governments for their approach towards such aspects. It is really sad that Agricultural Universities and Agricultural Research Institutes both at central and state levels have positioned themselves to underplay or ignore these negative aspects of the Green Revolution.
 It is a fact that the different components of Green Revolution greatly helped India in the 1970’s  to come out of a begging bowl stage to a food self sufficient stage. And all relevant stakeholders including farmers need to feel proud. But the warning signals of human and environmental health call for a mid-course correction in policies on agricultural research for development.
 Kheti Virasat Mission  (KVM) has been long sensitizing farmers and rural communities towards the negative aspects of GR-based modern agriculture and has been suggesting different aspects of Nanak Kheti (=Kudarti Kheti = Organic Farming) to address these issues. For the past about a decade KVM has been inviting experts on organic farming and arranging awareness lectures and training workshops to capacity build interested farmers in the region on the different practices and products of organic farming. The experts are generally successful farmers – those whose net incomes are better than their neighbor farmers practicing agro-chemical based modern agriculture) for education and training of local farmers in the different farming practices and products needed for high yield without agro-chemicals. It has been noted that most of the practices and products used by the successful farmers are scientifically sound and are also recommended by agricultural universities even though these are not pro-actively promoted by them. These include contour faming to catch the rain drops where they fall in cropped fields, intercrops and polycrops to enhance biodiversity, strong inclusion of legumes in cropping systems to harness/access atmospheric nitrogen so that fertilizer dependence of crops is reduced and enhanced use of biofertilzers and biopesticides. Still it has been noted that the voice of such movements and groups are not heard and their efforts are not supported by Punjab Agricultural University and the state Department of Agriculture in the state.
 From Kharif season 2012, KVM, in collaboration with other partners, is planning to initiate efforts to enhance wheat yield without agrochemicals. It is interesting to note that a good number of farmers associate with KVM for the past about five years are already harvesting high yield compared to their neighbor chemical farmers for several crops except wheat. But net profits of all these farmers are already higher than their neighbor chemical farmers due to premium price these farmers receive for their produce.  KVM and its stakeholders are sure that unless wheat yield is also comparable to those harvested by chemical farmers, they will continue to face problems in scaling up the “organic farming” which they fondly call “Nanak Kheti”. Two field experiments have been planned aimed at learning improvements in the crop production protocols needed for the purpose. One is focused on wet areas where rice is a major crop during Kharif and the other is for dry areas where cotton is a major crop in Kharif. Major features of both the field experiments were discussed in Consultative meeting at the Organic farm of Shri Indrjit Singh ( State Vice President KVM) in village Soholi near Nabha on 3 April 2012. About 50 farmers participated in the meeting and when asked at the end of the meeting, famers offered themselves to conduct one of the two expedients at their farmers. Under this research work we are going to take-up field experiments with two different manuals. One is about Cotton-Wheat System and another is about Paddy-Wheat System.  Following highlights of the two experiments are shared for information of all stakeholders (including partner farmers who have joined or have intention to join the experiments).
Kheti Virasat Mission took this initiative under the guidance of Centre for Sustainable Agriculture, Alliance for Sustainable & Holistic Agriculture (ASHA) and Organic Farming Association of India (OFAI).
The Experiment Protocol is developed and guided by Dr Om Prakash Rupela, Former Principal Scientist ICRISAT, Hyderabad and Former National Consultant to World Bank on Sustainable Agriculture Dr. G V Ramanjaneyulu , Executive Director, Centre for Sustainable Agriculture, Hyderabad has also played an important role in evolving this experiment.
 What CSA, ASHA, OFAI ,KVM and other civil society organizations and individuals are doing with their limited resources that should had been done by the Agriculture Universities of this country.  But unfortunately! This is not in happening. The research priorities of Agriculture Universities are quite away from the real needs of farmers and fundamental challenges emerged out of contemporary ecological-agricultural and health crisis. So with its limited resources and with the help of the revolutionary scientists like Dr. O P Rupela and Dr G V Ramanjaneyulu Kheti Virasat Mission has taken this unique participatory research work.
We request participant farmers to take up these experiments as a challenge with the spirit of freedom struggle and must assume a freedom fighter within them. Because making organic farming successful is as significant as any move to defend our Independence and Self-Reliance. As Organic Farming is the only way to save our planet and our farmers.

Ecologically in service of Mother Nature
Umendra Dutt 


Evaluation of Crop Husbandry Practices for High Yield of Wheat Without Agro-Chemicals, in Cotton Areas, Punjab.

An Experiment Manual for
Cotton –Wheat Cropping System

The manual
This experiment will have three treatment plots as three different cropping systems. Treatment I: Control (Cotton and Wheat – the ongoing Modern system - CWM) – the present practices of farmers – growing all crops using agro-chemicals. Treatment II: Cotton and Wheat Sustainable System (CWS) – Cotton in Kharif will be intercropped with short height (determinate type) cowpea and/or other legumes. Wheat, in Rabi season will be inter-cropped with chickpea (Desi Chana) or Linseed (Alsi). All possible features of the ‘System of Root Intensification - SRI’ will be practiced for all crops. Treatment III: Guar and Wheat Sustainable System (GWS) –In Kharif - Guar will be intercropped with millet (Bajra). In Rabi, wheat will be intercropped with chickpea (Desi Chana) or Alsi.

Because cotton is a long duration crop and its delayed harvest results in delay in timely sowing of wheat. It is opined that in year 1 (Kharif 2012 and Rabi 2012-13) the three treatments will be as explained above, but in year 2 (Kharif 2013 and Rabi 2013-14) Treatment II will grow ‘Guar and Wheat Sustainable System (GWS)’ and the Treatment III will grow ‘Cotton and Wheat Sustainable System (CWS)’. This method of rotation will highly likely would further enhance yield of wheat after cotton.

All the three treatments will occupy one acre. Two samples of the Generic Layout of the experiment were discussed with Mr Gurpreet Dabrikhana and their copies have been given to him. We will, however, need a separate layout of the experiment at the farm of every farmer-
Note: Ideally all the three treatments should be in same field. But if full area of a farmer is already under Kudrati Kheti, he/she can use neighbours’ field as chemical control and on-going organic practice as ‘control’. And Treatment II’ and ‘Treatment III’ will be as explained above. The ‘Fully’ organic farmer is expected to develop support of the neighbour farmer to collect data for the ‘chemical control’ plot.

Important: Excessive irrigation and too much wet soil was noted/believed as one of the  reasons of reduced wheat yield during the Feb 2012 visit to several farmers’ fields. Providing good drainage for Treatment II and Treatment III will be very important. Digging of a trench on lowest part of the field is strongly suggested. For example, one acre is 200’ x 198’, and if lowest part of field is on the width side ie. 198’ side then the size of the suggested trench will be 198 feet long, 4 feet wide and 4 feet deep. And it is expected that the 4feet depth can be made using the available tractor and will accommodate at least 70,000 liter water. See the layout.

Delayed sowing of wheat was noted as another major yield reducer. But this is an inherent issue when cotton is grown – being a long duration crop and/or also that maturity of cotton can readily get delayed due to pest attack. An idea of sowing wheat in the standing cotton is being considered and will only be used if found fully feasible.  

Khrif Season:

Treatment I: Control (Cotton and Wheat – the ongoing Modern system - CWM) – In this treatment plot growing cotton and wheat as is being done widely by farmers in the drier Punjab eg. Abohar etc. will be practiced. Modern varieties, bag fertilizers and pesticides, all possible modern machinery for field operations will be used.

i)           The wheat straw available in the plot should be managed the way neighbour chemical farmers do.
ii)         Prepare the field for cotton as done normally and apply all the kinds of inputs of fertilizers and pesticides normally done by the chemical farmers.
iii)       Variety of cotton should be same as recommended by PAU, both in control and for the other two treatments.
iv)       Fertilizer rates and time of application should be same as recommended for cotton by the PAU.
v)         Whenever cotton is ready for picking, identify three uniform representative spots and label them as “Sample Yield Spot”. Each spot should be two meters long one row. Allocate one separate cloth bag for each of the three spots. Go on picking cotton as and when ready and go on pooling in the relevant/separate bag for the three spots. At end of the season, take their weights separately and record the yield data in the ‘Field Book’ with the farmer. At the time of harvest, when field is being cleared – cut the cotton plants of the three “Sample Yield Spots” separately, at ground level, dry them for about one week, take their weights and record in the ‘Field Book’. These plants can be discarded after weighing.
Important: Always use ‘Pencil’ for writing ‘Field Label’ because ink of the ball pen vanishes in the sun.
vi)       Go on picking cotton from the rest of the plot. Record the number of gunny bags picked from the whole plot. Also, take weight of each bag, if possible, and record data in the ‘Field Book’.

Treatment II: Cotton and Wheat Sustainable System (CWS) – cotton in this case will be intercropped with a legume and therefore its row to row distance will be 4.5 feet (=54”). After long discussion with some farmers and scientists it is opined that short duration cowpea will be grown in paired rows between the two cotton rows such that the row to row distance between cowpea will be 12 inches and the distance between cotton row and cowpea row will be 21 inches. Because cotton is a long duration crop, sowing of wheat is bound to get delayed. And this delay will be same as for the Treatment I.
i)        Broadcast the ash-treated Aurogreen seeds in the standing wheat crop with the last irrigation, say in March. Appendix I has the details on what seeds to be taken and how to prepare them for sowing. Wheat is expected to be harvested in April and the cotton will be sown in early to mid May. We will thus get about two months of green manuring with this new method.
Note: Because the experiment is yet to start fully, we have missed the opportunity of growing Aurogreen crops in March 2012. We can be careful next time.
ii)      Remove the loose straw from the field so that the Aurogreen crops could grow well even at these spots. Standing stubble should be allowed to stand as such.
iii)    Let the weeds and the Aurogreen crops grow as long as feasible such that sowing of cotton is undertaken by about 15 May every year.
iv)    Obtain at least five quintals of Farm Yard Manure (FYM) and convert it to Living Manure (see method in Appendix III). It may be noted that conversion of FYM to Living Manure (LM) takes about one month. Therefore the process of conversion should start in March/April for Kharif crop and in September for Rabi crops. Ideally, it should be a continuous process on every farm, such that any available quantity FYM be converted to LM soonest possible, and store the LM for about two months, if needed. 
v)      Obtain seeds of a suitable cotton variety (not Bt. Cotton because it has sucking pest problem) where we are sure its yield will be similar to what the chemical farmers are harvesting these days with Bt cotton. But most important is that cotton variety should be same in the treatment I and II. And ideally it should be same at all the farms taking up this experiment. Mr Hartej Singh Mehta (mobile: …) may be contacted, if some farmer has any queries related to cotton seeds.
vi)          Test germination percent of the seeds using the method described in the Appendix V. Important: Always test germination % of seeds of the main crops every season.
vii)        Prime the seeds of the selected cotton variety. Method of seed priming is given in Appendix IV. It may be noted that priming should be done about 2-days in advance of sowing to avoid last-minute tension.
viii)      Purchase one quintal of oil-cake (of any oil-seed crop but preferably of Caster) for every acre. Convert the oil-cake into ‘Living Oil-cake’ (LOC, see method in Appendix VII) before sowing rice. Apply LOC to the treatment plots before land preparation.
ix)     Prepare the field as done normally in the case of cotton, and apply Living Oil-cake and 20kg ‘Ash’ just before land preparation.
x)      Sow the primed seeds of ‘Cotton’ and ‘Cowpea’ using ‘Cotton Seed Drill’. Distance between row to row in the case of cotton should be 54 inches. Within a cotton row plants should be about 24 inches apart. There should be two rows of cowpea between the two cotton rows such that the row to row distance between cowpea will be 12 inches and the distance between cotton and cowpea will be 21 inches. Take guidance from Mr Ashish Ahuja (mobile: 9779920474)/ Mr Hartej Singh Mehta (mobile: …. ), in case of queries.
xi)          Sow (in Kharif) one row of mixture of sorghum + bajra + maize + Jantar on all four sides of the treatment plot, as tall border to obstruct passage of some insects and as bird perches. And in Rabi, in the same row, sow mustard in-between sorghum-maize-Jantar without removing dead plants of sorghum-maize-Janter. Dead plants can continue to serve as bird perches.
xii)        Apply about five quintal of ‘Living FYM’ (having about 70% moisture) to Treatment plots when the crops are about 6 to 8 inches high and preferably just before irrigation.
xiii)       Water management: Field should be fully drained and there should be no standing water at any stage of crop growth. A trench has been strongly suggested (see layout) and it should be made at the time of ‘Layout’. Only need based irrigation should be applied to crops – we should let the soil surface dry and irrigate only when moist front has reached 3 to 4 inches deep. Important: Do not forget to add 50L urine per acre at the time of irrigation, if and when irrigation is a must. Urine should be added in the irrigation channel.
xiv)      Weed management: If weeds are a big issue, we should try manual weeding. One weeding at early stages of plant growth (BAAL-NIDAI) at about 20 days is strongly recommended. When crops are more than one foot high and weeds are still an issue, application of Bio-Herbicide using a protective hood (Chhatri) should be tried (see Appendix VI for making/using Bio-herbicide).
xv)        Sprays to boost plant growth: Apply ‘Gur-Jal Amrit’ (see Appendix IX for the method of its preparation) at about 30 days age of cotton and apply ‘Extract of Dry Dung’ - - or Paathi–Da-Paani (see Appendix X for the method of its preparation) at about 55 days age of cotton.
xvi)       Spray to protect plants from pests: Having trap crops, repellent crops, polycrops and trees (as shelter for birds and other creatures that devour insect-pests) are some basic requirements for managing pests without agro-chemicals. Until these factors are in place other options have to be considered. Apply diluted buttermilk (see Appendix XI for the method of its preparation) at about 30 days age and apply herbal extract (see Appendix XII for the method of its preparation) at about 45 days age. Note: Repeat application of buttermilk at 60 days age and herbal extract at 75 days age, if you feel there is a threat from pests. Legumes are likely to get more threats from pests than cotton. If threat from pests persist and you know other items/products to protect crops, please go ahead and apply.
Important: Contact Mr Gurpreet (mobile: 9915195062), as soon as you have seen any threat to the crops from pests or you have tried several options but the problem still persists.
xvii)    Whenever cotton is ready for picking, identify three uniform representative spots and label them as “Sample Yield Spot”. Each spot should be two meters long one row. Allocate one separate cloth bag for each of the three spots. Go on picking cotton as and when ready and go on pooling in the relevant/separate bag for the three spots. At end of the season, take their weights separately and record the yield data in the ‘Field Book’ with the farmer. At the time of harvest, when field is being cleared – cut the cotton plants of the three “Sample Yield Spots” separately, at ground level, dry them for about one week, take their weights and record in the ‘Field Book’. These plants can be discarded after weighing..
xviii)  Treatment II and Treatment III will grow ‘Aurogreen crops’ with the last irrigation to cotton, say in September.
xix)      Go on picking cotton from the rest of the plot. Record the number of gunny bags picked from the whole plot. Also, take weight of each bag, if possible, and record data in the ‘Field Book’.
xx)        When cowpea is almost ready for harvest hopefully in September (about 120days after sowing), identify three representative spots, cut the legume from one meter long two rows, using sickle at ground level. Sun-dry the bundle for one week. Thresh the bundle manually to separate grains from rest of the material. Add the grains in a strong paper or cloth bag and the other plant parts in a gunny bag. Take their weights separately and record the yield data in the ‘Field Book’ with the farmer. Harvest the cowpea manually when ready (hopefully by mid September) and bring it to the threshing floor. Recover grain by threshing and record the yield. Note: Collect the biomass from the threshing floor and spread it back to the field.
xxi)      For cotton, there will be multiple pickings. Record the cotton yield data when available. Broadcast the ash-treated Aurogreen seeds in the standing cotton crop, after harvest of legume and with the last irrigation, say in September. Appendix I has the details on what seeds to be taken and how to prepare them for sowing. Wheat will be sown after harvest of cotton, say in late November or early December. There will be at least one monthe time for growth of Aurogreen and this should help enhance growth of the following wheat.

Treatment III: Guar and Wheat System (GWS) –In Kharif - Guar will be intercropped with millet (Bajra) and in Rabi, wheat will be intercropped with chickpea or Alsi.
i)        Broadcast the ash-treated Aurogreen seeds in the standing wheat crop with the last irrigation, say in March. Appendix I has the details on what seeds to be taken and how to prepare them for sowing. Wheat is expected to be harvested in April and the Guar/Millet (Bajra) intercrop will be sown in mid May. We will thus get about two months of green manuring in this new method.
Note: Because the experiment is yet to start fully, we have missed the opportunity of growing Aurogreen crops in March 2012. We can be careful next time.
ii)      Remove the loose straw from the field so that the Aurogreen crops could grow well even at these spots. Standing stubble should be allowed to stand as such.
iii)    Let the weeds and the Aurogreen crops grow as long as feasible such that sowing of Guar-millet (Bajra) intercrop is undertaken by about 15 May every year.
iv)    Obtain at least five quintals of Farm Yard Manure (FYM) and convert it to Living Manure (see method in Appendix III). It may be noted that conversion of FYM to Living Manure (LM) takes about one month. Therefore the process of conversion should start in March/April for Kharif crop and in September for Rabi crops. Ideally, it should be a continuous process on every farm, such that any available quantity FYM be converted to LM soonest possible, and store the LM for about two months, if needed.
v)            Obtain seeds of the Guar and Millet (Bajra).
vi)          Test germination percent of seeds of Guar and Millet (Bajra) using the method described in the Appendix V. Important: Always test germination % of seeds of the main crops every season.
vii)        Prime the seeds of Bajra only. Method of seed priming is given in Appendix IV. It may be noted that priming should be done about 2-days in advance of sowing to avoid last-minute tension.
viii)      Purchase one quintal of oil-cake (of any oil-seed crop but preferably of Caster) for every acre. Convert the oil-cake into ‘Living Oil-cake’ (LOC, see method in Appendix VII) before sowing rice. Apply LOC to the treatment plots before reaper is used.
ix)          Cut the standing stubble of wheat and green materials by using Tudi Maker. But this Tudi should be uniformly spread in the same field after sowing Guar/Millet intercrop.
x)            The field is now ready for application of about 5 quintal of ‘Living FYM’ (having about 70% moisture), 20kg of ‘Ash’, and one quintal of ‘Living LOC’ (having about 70% moisture). Application should be done on soil surface, the way a farmer spreads fertilizer urea. Care: Plow the land soon after application. This is needed to protect the beneficial microorganisms in these materials.
xi)          Prepare the field as normally done for Guar/Millet. Note: the field has to be ready for sowing by or before 15 May.
xii)        Sow the prepared field using a seed drill having row arrangement at 7” and widely used for sowing wheat – generally having 11 row system. We need spacing in Guar/Millet as 24” from row to row, and two rows of Millet(Bajra) after every six rows of Guar. Within a row – about 30 cm or 12” from plant to plant. Do following modifications in the Seed Drill at the time of sowing.
a.       We need only four tines for sowing. Therefore, remove extra ‘tines’. The four tines (or the sowing lines) will be at 24 inches from each other.
b.      Make changes in the seed box such that last hole on one end receives Millet (Bajra) seed, while the other three receive Guar seed.
c.       Reduce seed rate to achieve proper distance within rows, as indicated above.
d.      Attach a heavy duty metal chain (SANGAL–widely used for tying Buffalo) between every two tines. This will result in a light furrow between every row.
xiii)      The above arrangement in the Seed Drill will result in 6-rows of Guar followed by 2-rows of Millet (Bajra).
Important: The above suggested spacing between row to row and within row spacing is  suggestion of O.P. Rupela, based on preliminary discussions with some scientists and farmers. Mr Ashish Ahuja (mobile no. 9779920474) has been requested to discuss this topic with stakeholder farmers and if needed, change this suggestion, to improve it.
xiv)      Sow (in Kharif) one row of mixture of sorghum + bajra + maize + Jantar on all four sides of the treatment plot, as tall border to obstruct passage of some insects and as bird perches. And in Rabi, in the same row, sow mustard in-between sorghum-maize-Jantar without removing dead plants of sorghum-maize-Janter. Dead plants can continue to serve as bird perches.
xv)        Water management: Field should be well drained and there should be no standing water at any stage of crop growth. A trench has been strongly suggested (see ‘Generic’ layout) and it should be made at the time of ‘Layout’. Only need based irrigation should be applied – we should let the surface dry and irrigate only when moist front has reached 3 to 4 inches deep. Important: Do not forget to add 50L urine per acre at the time of irrigation, if and when irrigation is a must. Urine should be added in the irrigation channel.
xvi)      Weed management: Weeds are a big issue and we should try manual weeding. One weeding at early stages of plant growth (BAAL-NIDAI) at about 20 days is strongly recommended. When crops are more than one foot high and weeds are still an issue, application of Bio-Herbicide using a protective hood should be tried (see Appendix VI for making/using Bio-herbicide).
xvii)    Sprays to boost plant growth: Apply ‘Gur-Jal Amrit’ (see Appendix IX for the method of its preparation) at about 30 days age of crops and apply ‘Extract of Dry Dung’ -- or Paathi –Da-Paani (see Appendix X for the method of its preparation) at about 55 days age of crops (just before flowering or at flowering).
xviii)  Sprays to protect plants from pests: Having trap crops, repellent crops, polycrops and trees (as shelter for birds and other creatures that devour insect-pests) are some basic requirements for a long lasting system of pest management without agro-chemicals. Until these factors are in place following spray options have to be considered. Apply diluted buttermilk (see Appendix XI for the method of its preparation) at about 30 days age and apply herbal extract (see Appendix XII for the method of its preparation) at about 45 days age. Repeat application of buttermilk at 60 days age and herbal extract at 75 days age, if you feel there is a threat from pests. If threat from pests persists and you know other biological items/products to protect the crops, please go ahead and apply.
Important: Contact Mr Gurpreet (mobile: 9915195062), as soon as you have seen any threat to the crops from pests.
xix)      Broadcast primed seeds of the “Aurogreen” crop (see names of seeds/crops and method in Appendix I) just before last irrigation, say in September.
xx)        When the crop is almost ready for harvest, identify three representative spots each for Guar and Bajra. Cut the plants from one meter long two rows of Guar and also from one meter long two rows of Bajra separately, using sickle at ground level. Sun-dry the bundles for one week. Thresh the bundles manually/separately to separate grains from rest of the material. Add the 2-types of grains in separate strong paper or cloth bags and the other plant parts in separate gunny bags. Take their weights separately and record the yield data (both for grains and for biomass) in the ‘Field Book’ with the farmer.
xxi)      Whenever ready, harvest the Millet(Bajra) manually. But harvest Guar by combine, hopefully by first week of October. Record the number of gunny bags of grains of the two crops harvested from the whole plot. Also, take weight of each bag and record data in the ‘Field Book’.
Important: Send the three samples each of Guar and Bajra for analyses of a) Protein %, b) pesticide residues.
xxii)    There will be about 4-weeks time between harvest of Guar/Bajra in early October and sowing of wheat (by 15 November). Let the Aurogreen crops continue to grow at least up to 10 November.


Rabi Season:

Treatment I: Control (Cotton and Wheat – the ongoing Modern system - CWM) – Wheat will be sown after harvest of cotton as per the method widely used by farmers in the area i.e. using modern varieties, bag fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides, all possible modern machinery for field operations – as indicated below, let’s call it ‘Farmers Practice’.
i)              Prepare the field before wheat as done normally, apply fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides as normally done by the chemical farmers.
ii)            Variety of wheat should be same as recommended by PAU (PBW621), both in control and for the other two treatments (Treatment II and Treatment III).
iii)          Fertilizer rates and time of application should be same as recommended for wheat by the PAU.
iv)       When the crop is almost ready for harvest, identify three representative/random spots. Size of spots should be one meter square. Using sickle at ground level cut the crop and Sun-dry the bundles for one week. Separately thresh the three bundles manually to separate grains from rest of the material. Add the grains in strong paper or cloth bags and the other plant parts in a gunny bag. Take their weights separately and record the data in the ‘Field Book’ with the farmer. Harvest wheat when ready, by using combine. Record the number of gunny bags harvested from the whole plot. Also, take weight of each bag, if possible, and record data in the ‘Field Book’. Important: Send the three grain samples of wheat for analyses of a) Protein %, b) pesticide residues.

Treatment II: Cotton and Wheat Sustainable system (CWS) – Sowing of the wheat after cotton generally gets delayed due to delay in the harvest of cotton. A new approach of sowing wheat by Fukuoka method (making seed balls and broadcasting in standing crop) is being considered. But it will require prior testing. Until it is done, we will continue tolerate the delay in sowing wheat.

i)        Broadcast ash-treated Aurogreen seeds in the standing cotton with the last irrigation, but after harvest of legume, say in September. Appendix I has the details on what seeds to be taken and how to prepare them for sowing. Cotton is expected to be harvested by mid November and wheat will be sown in early December. We will thus get about one month of green manuring in this new method. Even up to 20 days growth is worth because by that time roots of the Aurogreen crops would have reached beyond 30cm deep that would have enhanced diversity and population of agriculturally beneficial microorganisms.
ii)      Remove cotton stocks from the field when cotton has been harvested, so that the Aurogreen crops could grow well even at these spots.
iii)    Get the cotton stocks broken into pieces by using the machine commonly available with the power generation plants run on plant biomass.
iv)          Let the weeds and the Aurogreen crops grow as long as feasible such that sowing of Wheat/Chana intercrop is undertaken by about 15 November every year.
v)            Obtain seeds of the wheat variety PBW621 and Chana variety PBG5 and test their germination, using the method described in the Appendix V.
Note: Wheat variety should be same in all the three treatment plots. And ideally it should be same at all the farms taking up this experiment.
vi)          Obtain about five quintals of Farm Yard Manure (FYM) and convert it to Living Manure as described in Appendix III.
vii)        Purchase one quintal of oil-cake (of any oil-seed crop that is readily available) for every acre area. Convert the oil-cake into ‘Living Oil-cake’ as described Appendix IV.
viii)      Apply the living FYM, living Oil Cake and 20kg ‘Ash’ on surface and plow the field. Prepare the field as normally done for sowing Wheat/Chana. Note: the field has to be ready for sowing by or before 15 November.
ix)          Sow the prepared field using a seed drill having row arrangement at 7” and widely used for sowing wheat – generally having 11 row system. We need spacing in wheat/chickpea or Alsi as 12” from row to row, and two rows of Chana or Alsi after every four rows of Wheat. Within a row – ideally about 20 cm or 8” from plant to plant. Do following modifications in the ‘wheat seed drill’ at the time of sowing.
a.       Adjust all pora at 12” (or one foot) distance, and there should be a total of eight pora only. Remove extra ‘tines’ and ‘pora’ where needed.
b.      Reduce seed rate such that we do not sow more than 20kg wheat seed per acre and not more than 8kg seed of Chana per acre.
c.       Make changes in the seed box such that holes at both ends receives Chana seed and the middle six receive wheat seeds.
d.      Attach a heavy duty metal chain (SANGAL–widely use for tying Buffalo) between every two tines. This will result in a light furrow between every row.
x)            Sow 6-rows of wheat followed by 2-rows of Chana. Mix some seeds of Dhania with Chana – about 50g with every kilo of Chana seed. Dhania will serve as repellent.
xi)          Sow one row each of Sarson and linseed on all four sides of the treatment plot. These will serve as ‘Trap Crops’ for some insect-pests.
xii)        Soon after sowing, apply all the cut-pieces of cotton biomass back to the whole field manually.
xiii)      Irrigate the field, if needed, for best germination.
xiv)      Weed management: Weeds are generally a big issue, and we should try manual weeding. One weeding at early stages of plant growth (BAAL-NIDAI) at about 20 days is strongly recommended. When crops are more than one foot high and weeds are still an issue, application of Bio-Herbicide using a protective hood should be tried (see Appendix VI for making/using Bio-herbicide)
xv)        Sprays to boost plant growth: Apply ‘Gur-Jal Amrit’ (see Appendix IX for the method of its preparation) at about 30 days age of crops and apply ‘Extract of Dry Dung’ -- or Paathi–Da-Paani (see Appendix X for the method of its preparation) at about 55 days age of crops (just before flowering or at flowering).
xvi)      Spray to protect plants from pests: Having trap crops, repellent crops, polycrops and trees (as shelter for birds and other creatures that devour insect-pests) are some basic requirements for managing pests without agro-chemicals. Until these factors are in place other options have to be considered. Apply diluted buttermilk (see Appendix XI for the method of its preparation) at about 40 days age and apply herbal extract (see Appendix XII for the method of its preparation) at about 65 days age. Note: Repeat application of buttermilk at 75 days age and herbal extract at 90 days age, if you feel there is a threat from pests. There may not be any further threat from pests, when the crop is about 100 days age.
Important: Contact Mr Gurpreet (mobile: 9915195062), as soon as you have seen any threat to the crops from pests. 
xvii)    Water management: We must not irrigate, if the field is moist from surface. Irrigation should be considered only if top soil is dry but has some moisture at 4” depth. And whenever irrigation is must, do not irrigate Chana – it can be achieved by making small bunds around Chana rows. It is hoped that wheat will need about 2 and maximum 3 irrigations. Important: Do not forget to add 50L urine per acre at the time of irrigation, if and when irrigation is a must. Urine should be added in the irrigation channel.
xviii)  Broadcast 4 kg seed (ie. 10kg per acre) of the “Aurogreen” crop (see names of seeds/crops and method in Appendix I) just before last irrigation to wheat, say in March.
xix)      When the crop is almost ready for harvest, identify three representative spots each for Wheat and Chana. Cut the plants from one meter long three rows of Wheat and one meter long two rows of Chana, using sickle at ground level. Sun-dry the bundles for one week. Thresh the bundles manually/separately to separate grains from rest of the material. Add the 2-types of grains in separate strong paper or cloth bags and the other plant parts in separate gunny bags. Take their weights separately and record the yield data (both for grains and for biomass) in the ‘Field Book’ with the farmer. Harvest Chana manually before harvesting wheat by combine (hopefully by mid April). Record the number of gunny bags of grains of the two crops harvested from the whole plot. Also, take weight of each bag, if possible, and record data in the ‘Field Book’.
xx)        There will be about 30 days time between harvest of Wheat/Chana and sowing of next crop (by 15 May). Let the Aurogreen crops continue to grow at least up to 10 May.
Important: Send the three samples each of Wheat and Chana for analyses of a) Protein %, b) pesticide residues.

Treatment III: Guar and Wheat Sustainable System (GWS) - The wheat after Guar/Bajra will be sown as intercrop with chickpea (Chana) or Alsi.
i)              It is hoped that Guar/Bajra will be harvested, using combine, by early to mid October. Let the field remain as such, with standing stubble for up to at least 10 November so that the Aurogreen crops and weeds can grow in the standing stubble.
ii)            Cut the standing stubble of Guar and green materials by using reaper to mow it down, and uniformly spread the biomass.
iii)          Remove the loose plant biomass from the treatment plot by using a ‘Rake’. The field is now ready for application of about 5 quintal of ‘Living FYM’ (having about 70% moisture) and one quintal of ‘Living LOC’ (having about 70% moisture). Application should be done on soil surface, the way a farmer spreads fertilizer urea. Care: Plow the land soon after application. This is also needed to protect the beneficial microorganisms in these materials.
iv)          Also, surface apply 20kg ‘Ash’ before preparation of the field as normally done for sowing Wheat. Note: the field has to be ready for sowing by or before 15 November. Sow the prepared field using a seed drill having row arrangement at 7” and widely used for sowing wheat – generally having 11 row system. We need spacing in wheat/chickpea or Alsi as 12” from row to row, and two rows of Chana or Alsi after every four rows of Wheat. Within a row – ideally about 20 cm or 8” from plant to plant. Do following modifications in the ‘wheat seed drill’ at the time of sowing.
a.       Adjust all pora at 12” (or one foot) distance, and there should be a total of eight pora only. Remove extra ‘tines’ and ‘pora’ where needed.
b.      Reduce seed rate such that we do not sow more than 20kg wheat seed per acre and not more than 8kg seed of Chana per acre.
c.       Make changes in the seed box such that holes at both ends receives Chana seed and the middle six receive wheat seeds.
d.      Attach a heavy duty metal chain (SANGAL–widely use for tying Buffalo) between every two tines. This will result in a light furrow between every row.
v)            Sow 6-rows of wheat followed by 2-rows of Chana or Alsi. Mix some seeds of Dhania with Chana – about 50g with every kilo of Chana seed. Dhania will serve as repellent.
vi)          Sow one row each of Sarson and linseed on all four sides of the treatment plot. These will serve as ‘Trap Crops’ for some insect-pests.
vii)        Soon after sowing, apply all the cut-pieces of cotton biomass back to the whole field manually.
viii)      Irrigate the field, if needed, for best germination.
ix)          Weed management: Weeds are generally a big issue, and we should try manual weeding. One weeding at early stages of plant growth (BAAL-NIDAI) at about 20 days is strongly recommended. When crops are more than one foot high and weeds are still an issue, application of Bio-Herbicide using a protective hood should be tried (see Appendix VI for making/using Bio-herbicide)
x)            Sprays to boost plant growth: Apply ‘Gur-Jal Amrit’ (see Appendix IX for the method of its preparation) at about 30 days age of crops and apply ‘Extract of Dry Dung’ -- or Paathi–Da-Paani (see Appendix X for the method of its preparation) at about 55 days age of crops (just before flowering or at flowering).
xi)          Spray to protect plants from pests: Having trap crops, repellent crops, polycrops and trees (as shelter for birds and other creatures that devour insect-pests) are some basic requirements for managing pests without agro-chemicals. Until these factors are in place other options have to be considered. Apply diluted buttermilk (see Appendix XI for the method of its preparation) at about 40 days age and apply herbal extract (see Appendix XII for the method of its preparation) at about 65 days age. Note: Repeat application of buttermilk at 75 days age and herbal extract at 90 days age, if you feel there is a threat from pests. There may not be any further threat from pests, when the crop is about 100 days age.
Important: Contact Mr Gurpreet (mobile: 9915195062), as soon as you have seen any threat to the crops from pests. 
xii)        Water management: We must not irrigate, if the field is moist from surface. Irrigation should be considered only if top soil is dry but has some moisture at 4” depth. And whenever irrigation is must, do not irrigate Chana – it can be achieved by making small bunds around Chana rows. It is hoped that wheat will need about 2 and maximum 3 irrigations. Important: Do not forget to add 50L urine per acre at the time of irrigation, if and when irrigation is a must. Urine should be added in the irrigation channel.
xiii)      Broadcast 4 kg seed (ie. 10kg per acre) of the “Aurogreen” crop (see names of seeds/crops and method in Appendix I) just before last irrigation to wheat, say in March.
xiv)      When the crop is almost ready for harvest, identify three representative spots each for Wheat and Chana. Cut the plants from one meter long three rows of Wheat and one meter long two rows of Chana, using sickle at ground level. Sun-dry the bundles for one week. Thresh the bundles manually/separately to separate grains from rest of the material. Add the 2-types of grains in separate strong paper or cloth bags and the other plant parts in separate gunny bags. Take their weights separately and record the yield data (both for grains and for biomass) in the ‘Field Book’ with the farmer. Harvest Chana manually before harvesting wheat by combine (hopefully by mid April). Record the number of gunny bags of grains of the two crops harvested from the whole plot. Also, take weight of each bag, if possible, and record data in the ‘Field Book’. There will be about 30 days time between harvest of Wheat/Chana and sowing of next crop (by 15 May). Let the Aurogreen crops continue to grow at least up to 10 May.
Important: Send the three samples each of Wheat and Chana for analyses of a) Protein %, b) pesticide residues.

Appendix I

Aurogreen for Broadcast in Standing Rice, Guar or Wheat

1.      Take total of only ten kg seed of the following crops for every one acre area: 6 kg legumes (Horse gram (Macrotyloma uniflorum, Gahat in Punjabi), Mungbean, Urd, Cowpea, Moth, Masar-all mix); 2kg cereals (pearlmillet, sorghum, maize, wheat, raagi); and one kg oilseeds (mustard, linseed, safflower, sunflower, seseme).
2.      Mix all the seeds and add about 100g each of Saunf, Ajwain and Dill (Soi Aku in Telugu, Sava in Hindi, Soya in Punjabi, Anethum graveolens).
3.      Soak the seeds in water, for about four hours.
4.      Drain excess water and spread the seeds on a gunny sheet in shade.
5.      Sprinkle about 500g dry ash on it and mix well. The seeds are now ready for broadcasting.
Important: Sowing/broadcasting should be done about one month before harvesting rice, Guar or wheat. Braodcasting can be done just before last irrigation to these crops, -- say in September for Rice and Guar, and in March for Wheat.
***

Appendix II

Using Animal Urine as Source of Nitrogen

Urine of animals can have up to 4% N, 1% P and 2% K. Its pH is generally 7 (neutral). It is a highly underutilized natural source of crop nutrients. Following method is suggested to harness it.
1.      Collect as much urine as feasible. Note: A good farmer should store at least 50L urine for every acre land, at any given time, ie. if a farmer has 5 acre land, he/she should store at least 250L urine.
2.      Take 50L urine to field to be irrigated.
3.      Take a 20L plastic jerry can having a tap at the base. Fill the jerry can with urine.
4.      Put the jerry can at the irrigation channel where water is entering the plot/field to be irrigated. Open the tap such that whole of 50 L urine gets used up as the field gets fully irrigated.
Note: Up to 50L urine can be applied with every irrigation.
Caution: The method suggested above is for soil application. It can be sprayed on crops but after dilution (5L urine added to sprayer and make the volume to 15L). Concentrated spray burns leaves.
***
Appendix III

Converting Farm Yard Manure (FYM) into Living Manure

This is a method of adding value to the FYM. Most modern agricultural scientists and agricultural research institutions measure value of FYM in terms of quantity of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and potash (K) in it. Cattle dung and FYM have been noted to contain microorganisms of all the six types of functional groups of beneficial microorganisms – nitrogen fixers, phosphate solubilizers, cellulose degraders, plant-growth promoters, antagonists of disease-causing fungi and entomopathogens. Therefore the real value of FYM is in the population and diversity of agriculturally beneficial microorganisms it contains and not in the concentration of NPK. Its biological value can be further enhanced by the following method.
1.      Take any quantity of FYM that needs to be converted and spread it on side of a field.
2.      Break the clods.
3.      Mix the heap well with equal quantity (by dry weight basis and not volume) of local soil (surface soil from the same field is fine). Note: great if we can use cement mixer for the purpose. But it is realized that it can be difficult.
4.      Sprinkle water so that whole heap is most but friable and not dripping wet.
5.      Set the mixed heap into a bed about one feet high, 3-feet wide and up to any length so that the whole heap FYM plus soil mixture is finished.
6.      Take about 2kg seeds of Aurogreen crops (1kg seeds of legumes--Mungbean, Urad, Masar, Desi-Chana, Horse Gram; 400g seeds of cereals- -Bajra, Jawar, Wheat, Raagi; 400g of oil-seeds—Sarson, Til, Alsi, Sunflower; 50g seeds each of Sonf, Dhania, Mirch and Methe). Mix all the seeds and soak in water for 2 to 4 hours. Discard water and spread the seeds on a dry Gunny-bag. Sprinkle about 200g dry Ash. Note: all the different seeds should be from farmers own crops. If a farmer does not have these seeds, he/she can borrow/purchase seeds from neighbour farmers or can purchase from Grocery shop. The total cost may generally be within Rs. 50/-.
7.      The hydrated seeds of the Aurogreen crops are now ready for sowing on top the FYM bed mixed with soil. Sprinkle water over top and cover the bed with about 3 inches thick Paraali or any other plant biomass.
8.      Keep a watch on germination of the seeds. Remove the cover when majority seeds have germinated and use the same cover on all sides of the bed, to reduce water loss.
9.      Let the crops grow for about 25 days. Remove the plants with roots, cut then into small pieces, mix the bed thoroughly, reset the bed, and cover with a new lot of Paraali or plant biomass.  Use the compost after about 10 days. Note: covered and moist heap can stay active for over one month without reduction in its quality.
10.  The resultant quantity is enough for two fields of one acre each. Note: the population of the different agriculturally beneficial microorganisms has been noted to increase by 10-times to 100-times compared to what it was in the FYM. Thus we have increased the value of compost by 10 to 100 times.
11.  Apply the Living FYM (at least two quintals per acre per crop) just before irrigation.  It should be broad-casted in a standing crop, the way one would apply fertilizer urea. But this product should be used when the crop is already at least 6 inches tall so that the beneficial microorganisms are able to survive well. It can also be applied just before land preparation.
***

Appendix IV
Seed Priming*

1.      Take about 100L of concentrated ‘Jeevamrit’ after sieving through coarse cloth.
2.      Purchase about 5kg of ‘Lime’ or ‘Chuna’, widely used for whitewash of houses. Put it in a thick cloth sheet and make ‘Potli’. Suspend the Potli in the container having Jeevamrit for about an hour. Then smudge squeeze its contents in the Jeevamrit, until only sand/stones are left in the potli. Discard the sand/stones.
3.      Take required quantity of seeds and soak them in the ‘Jeevamrit plus lime’ mixture. Number of hours of soaking is very important and it varies from seed to seed and is given below for some seeds for which experiments have been done. For others, farmers are encouraged to develop their own experience.
4.      Drain the excess ‘Jeevamrit’.
5.      Dry the seeds in shade. They are now ready for sowing.

Soaking Time for different crop seeds
Rice-14 hours, Wheat-6 hours, Chan-4 hours, Jawar-5 hours, Bajra-5 hours, Moong & urad-3 hours, Cotton-6 hours, Cowpea-4 hours
Note: Sowing be completed soonest possible. The primed seeds should not be stored for more than two days.

*For Cotton: Take powder of “Ghan Jeev Amrit” and mix with equal quantity of Ash. Mix well and sprinkle it on the wet/soaked seeds. Smudge them so that each seed gets rounded like a small ball. Dry them in shade. They are then ready for sowing using a seed drill.

***
*     The method is based on the publication of Harris D.. et.al. 1999. Experimental Agriculture 35:15-29; Musa,A.M. et.al. 2001. Experimental Agriculture 37: 509-521.





Appendix V
Testing Germination of Seeds

1.      Take approximately 1000 seeds.
2.      Soak them in water for about four hours (20hours in the case of rice).
3.      Drain the excess water and line-up the seeds on short side (width) of twin sheet of a newspaper. Wrap the seeds in the newspaper, in the form of a tube.
4.      Fold the newspaper tube and put in a polythene bag.
5.      Add excess water in the bag and drain it after few minutes.
6.      Drain the excess water again after about 30 minutes.
7.      Keep the polythene bag in a room for four days, if it is summer/rainy days, and for seven days, if it is winter.
8.      Take out and straighten the folded newspaper tube, unfold the paper so that the seeds are visible.
9.      Count the total number of seeds and record in the ‘Field Book’
10.  Count the germinated seeds and record in the ‘Field Book’. Calculated the percent germination.
***
Appendix VI

Urine and Khaadi Soap Mix as a Bioherbicide*

1.      Take 40L urine which is less than one month old and is free of excessive dung and soil.
2.      Take 200g of Khaadi Soap. Make into small shreds by using Grater (KADDU-KAS KARNA HAI), widely used in kitchens.
3.      Add the grated soap into 2L of warm water to suspend it fully. Add the suspended soap to the urine just before using, mix well, filter and spray on one acre area.

* It is a new idea. It can greatly help manage weeds without poisonous chemicals and with least labor.
***

Bioherbicide (modification by Mr Inderjeet Singh Soholi)

1.      Take 15L urine in a sprayer.
2.      Add 2 eggs and shake well.
3.      Add 10g of surf powder and shake well.
4.      Spray on to weeds on an empty field. Most weeds should die in about 2 to 4 days.
5.      With the use of Chhatri, the herbicide can be sprayed between rows of a standing crop, if they are sown at least 30cm apart. The sprayer must be kept low i.e. just above the weeds so that spray does not fall on the crop plants.
***

Appendix VII

Method of Converting Oil-cake to Living Oil-Cake

1.      Take about 100L of Amritpaani (concentrated and 3 to 7 days old) in a 200L drum.
2.      Add about one quintal of any oil-seed cake in the Amritpaani and let it soak for overnight.
3.      Take out the soaked oil-cake on a big plastic sheet or Gunny-sheet and cover the heap with Paraali or any available plant biomass.
4.      Smudge the contents by hands or any convenient tool so that it turns into friable material.
5.      Spread the powdered material into one acre field.
***
Appendix VIII

Method of Paata for Rice

This is an innovative approach for managing weeds in rice and enhance its tillers. Its innovator Mr Harpal Singh Grewal of village Theri Baba Savan Singh, Sirsa (mobile: 9050101355) has been using it for over 3-years.
1.      Prepare a suitable Paata, using a 12 feet (length can be smaller) x 4” x 2” rectangular hollow pipe. The pipe should have two hooks at equidistance from centre, welded on the 2” side so that rope could be tied for pulling.
2.      Paata needs to be pulled manually by two persons. Two persons have been noted to 4 acres per day.
3.      Irrigate a field, say in the morning. Apply Paata when about 1” water is standing.  Water should be drained out when Paata is done.
Note: Rice after Paata stands up within 24 hours while weeds get damaged. This activity also enhances more tillers in rice.
4.      Pata should be done at least three times (say at day 20, 35, 50) before the crop commits to flowering (noted by swollen base of stem of the plants). Important: Pata must not be done when base of the stem of the rice plants has swollen.
***

Append IX

Method of Making Gur-Jal-Amrit*

1.    Add about 60kg cowdung in a 200L drum.
2.    Suspend 3 kg gud in about 5L water in a bucket. Mix well. Add this into the drum having cowdund.
3.    Suspend 1 kg flour of any pulse in about 5L water in a bucket.  Mix well and add this into the drum having cowdund.
4.    Add 200ml mustard oil in the drum.
5.    Go on adding water and mixing until the total volume is about 150L.
6.    Mix every day for at least 3-times a day for about 10minutes each time.
7.    Contents are ready for use on day 3. It has been noted to enhance crop growth.

***





Appendix X

Extract of Dry Cowdung (Paathi-Da-Paani)*

1.      Take a wide mouth container – 100 or 200L barrel, open from top.
2.      Add about 50L of water in the barrel.
3.      Add about 15 kg of one year old cow dung cakes. Let them soaked fully in water for four days. Note: It may need some weight on top of the Dung Cakes, so that they remain submerged in water.
4.      The resultant liquid when sprayed on crops has been noted to improve crop growth by several farmers in Punjab.
5.      Take about 2L liquid in a 15 L capacity sprayer. Fill it with water. Mix well and spray.

Note: the dung cakes can be dried and used as a fuel.
…………….
* The method was told to farmers by Mr Suresh Desai of Belgaum Karnataka (mobile: 9480448256) during his Punjab travel in 2009.

Appendix XI

Method of Making Butter Milk as Pest Manager*

1.      Take 5L milk (not toned milk), boil and cool to room temperature.
2.      Make curd from this milk when temperature is about 35°C, by adding about 20 g good quality curd. Note: Cover the container with woolen cloth during  winter. Otherwise, curd will not set.
3.      Make about 10L Lassi from the Curd. Put the Lassi in a plastic drum. Keep the content for one week.
4.      After one week, add about one foot long copper strip or about one meter long copper wire (after making a spiral). Keep the content for at least 5-days (can be kept even for 7 days).
5.      Lassi will become greenish-blue, and is ready for use.
6.      Dilute the 10L Lassi to about 100L by adding water. Spray the diluted Lassi on crop in one acre area.
***

* It is a widely known recipe among organic farmers and listed on the website www.sristi.org, and they upload such pieces of traditional knowledge after some validation.

Appendix XII
Method of Making Herbal Extract*

1.      Collect about 10 kg wet foliage (leaves and tender twigs) of following botanicals.
a.       Aak (Calotropis),
b.      Datura (Datura metel)
c.       Caster (Ricinus communis)
d.      Neem (Azadirachta indica)
e.       Gaajar-ghaas (Parthenium hysterophorus),
f.       Barahmaasi (Tridax procumbens) or any other weed known to farmers as manager of insect pests.
2.      Dry the foliage of every botanical, separately. Take dry material of one type at a time and grind it in a blender (Mixy) - a kitchen equipment.
3.      Grind all the materials one by one. Store the powdered botanicals in a dry place, for use when needed in future. It can be stored for about a year. Note: There is no need to grind Caster cake and Neem cake.
4.      Another item to be stored is at least 40L of urine – preferably stored in 20L plastic barrels (blue color or black color that can tolerate sun) having airtight caps.
Important: Every farmer should collect, process and store sufficient quantity of the above listed botanicals/materials during March to June for use during the following one year. At least 4 kg each of the botanicals and 4 kg each of the two types of cakes (Neem and Caster) will be needed to protect crops for one full year on one acre area. It will provide two sprays to a Kharif crop and another two sprays for a Rabi crop.
A day before spray:
5.      Take 20L urine in a 200L barrel. Add 20L hot water in the barrel. Add one kg powder each of five or six botanicals that were collected during last summer.
6.      Take 2kg Neem Cake or Caster cake (only one type of cake is enough). Soak in about 4L of hot water and leave it for four hours. It will swell. Smudge with hands so that it becomes a friable material. Add this to the barrel having the other botanicals.
7.      Shake the contents in the barrel and make the total volume to 100L by adding hot water.
8.      Leave the contents in the barrel for overnight. It is now ready for application to crops as a prophylactic. It may protect against several insect pests.
9.      Sieve the contents before adding to the sprayer.

Most important: This is a prophylactic and every organic farmer should practice it. If some insect-pests are still an issue, please immediately contact Mr Gurpreet Dabrikhana.
***
* Botanicals and oil-cakes suggested here are well known among organic farmers as insect managers. Traditional method suggests taking hot water extracts that is time consuming and farmers were noted to shun the practice over the simpler options. During ICRISAT tenure, OPR noted powders as a convenient option and farmers accepted it readily.

Appendix XIII
List of Inputs or Activities in Treatment-II and Treatment-III
(starting with standing crop of wheat)

Timely action for sowing, irrigation, crop protection etc. is very important for high yield of any crop. This table has been made as a ready-reckoner to help farmers so that they take up required activity in a timely manner.

S. No.
Input/Activity
Approx. month
Remarks
Year 1--Kharif

Broadcasting Aurogreens in standing wheat, with last irrigation or about one month before harest
Feb/March


Combine harvest of wheat
April/May


Procuring seeds of Rice and Guar and testing their germination before seed priming
April/May
Use varieties reported best by agricultural institutes in your region

Preparation of living FYM
May


Reaper to cut the standing stubble of wheat and Aurogreens
Early June


Raking of loose plant biomass, for Guar plot
Early June


Spray  of Bio-Herbicide after reaper, for rice plot
10 June


Application of Living Oil Cake (1quintal/acre) as friable material at land preparation in Guar plot and before Happy Seeder in Rice plot.
10-14 June


Seed priming for rice seeds, cotton seeds and Guar seeds



Sowing of rice by Happy Seeder, where relevant, in the presence of loose plant biomass as surface mulch. Note: Remove loose plant biomass, if Happy Seeder does not accept it, and relay the biomass after sowing by Happy Seeder.
Mid June


Plowing, making ridges/furrows and sowing of Guar where relevant, and spreading of plant biomass as surface mulch, soon after sowing 
Mid June


Preparation of Living Oilseed Cake
July


Application of Living FYM (2quintal/acre) as friable material, in standing crop
July
Just before first irrigation or rains

Apply Gur-Jal-Amrit
Jul
At 20, 30 days age of crop

Apply extract of dry cow-dung cakes
Jul/Aug
At 40, 50 days age of crop

Paata in standing rice at day 22, 35 and 50 
Jul/Aug


Apply buttermilk
Aug/Sept
Just before flowering (60 days age) and grain filling stage (90 days age)*

Manual weeding where relevant, at least once



Year 1-Rabi



Broadcasting Aurogreens in standing rice, with last irrigation or about one month before harvest
October


Procuring seeds of Wheat/Chana testing its germination before seed priming
October
Use varieties reported best by agricultural institutes in your region

Combine harvest of rice
Oct/Nov.


Reaper to cut the standing stubble of rice and Aurogreens
12 Nov


Raking of loose plant biomass
by 15 Nov


Application of Living Oil Cake (1quintal/acre) as friable material at land preparation
16 Nov


Seed priming for wheat and Chana seeds
16 Nov


Plowing, making ridges/furrows and sowing of Wheat/Chana, and spreading of plant biomass as surface mulch, soon after sowing 
17 Nov


Application of Living FYM (2quintal/acre) as friable material, in standing crop
end Dec
Just before first irrigation

Apply Gur-Jal-Amrit
Dec
At 20, 30 days age of crop

Apply extract of dry cow-dung cakes
Jan
At 40, 50 days age of crop

Apply buttermilk
Feb/March
Just before flowering (60 days age) and grain filling stage (90 days age)*

Manual weeding where relevant, at least once






* 1. Avoid spraying whenever any crop is flowering.
   2. Date/month to be fine-tuned by each farmer for their fields.
   3. A similar detailed list of activities will be prepared for ‘Year II’ in due course.

Appendix XIV
Application of Ash

 Ash contains all the about 30 elements a plant needs for balanced growth. But much of their concentration is in bound form. In the organic farming methods, the bound form of the elements gets converted to available form due organic acids and enzymes excreted by plant roots and microorganisms on plant root surface, in soil. Method is given below.
1.      Collect all available ‘Ash’ from kitchen. Note: Ash from any plant biomass is also good and should be collected in plastic gunny bags and stored for use.
2.      At least 20 kg ‘Ash’ should be applied at land preparation. It can be spread on soil suface as one will do urea. Note: If the volume is less, it can be mixed with dry soil (preferably of same field) and used.
3.      Another round of 20kg ‘Ash’ should be applied at about 50 days after sowing or before flowering. It can be sprinkled on plants. Note: If the volume is less, it can be mixed with dry soil (preferably of same field) and used.


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