Cultivation of the new drought tolerant rice rise
Nirapad News : Cultivation of the new drought tolerant rice variety BRII 57 gains popularity amongst farmers in the Panchagrah district as it has a short lifecycle. The crop was farmed under the newly evolved crop-disposition plan.
Following the harvest, Haribhasha Union Federation organised a field day at Kholapara village in Panchagarh Sadar upazila. Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE)’s deputy director, Panchagarh Md. Sohir Uddin attended the programme as chief guest, programme coordinator of Panchagarh RDRS Bangladsh Hasina Begum and agriculture officer MA Akhtar attended as special guests while DAE’s president, Solaiman Ali presided over the meeting.
The discussants said the new crop-disposition programme jointly directed by Krishi Gobeshona Foundation and RDRS Bangladesh is gaining popularity among the framers of the northern districts.
Under the new crop-plan, farmers can cultivate four crops on a single plot of land throughout the year. During the aman season they can cultivate BRII-57, BINA-7. After harvesting within the first week of November, they can sow mustard or potatoes. In the first week of February they can reap the crops and then sow mug pulses during the first week of March. After Mug pulses, farmers can cultivate short lifecycle Parija paddy which is possible to harvest by August.
Around 300 farmers of three upzilas including Atwary, Boda and Panchagarh sadar of Panchagarh district cultivated the drought tolerant aman paddy on about 500 acres of land in the current season, DAE officials said.
Non-government organisation RDRS Bangladesh provided technical support and seeds to the farmers while the Krishi Gobeshona Foundation provided financial assistance for the new crop-disposition programme, Hasina Begum said.
Harvested in October, the drought tolerant rice variety BRII-57 is the ideal candidate to fight monga, a seasonal famine-like situation that often grips drought-prone areas in the country’s northern region from mid-September to mid-November every year, said agriculture officials and local farmers. By creating jobs for day labourers and bringing solvency to farmers, this crop fights through the effects of monga, they said. Crop diversity is also able to ensure the country’s food security in the current context of climate change, they added.
“Drought tolerant rice varieties BRRI Dhan-57 are harvested early as its lifecycle is completed in 100-105 days. The rice with long and thin grains is highly demanded in the market. This variety can be transplanted from early July to early August in Bangladesh and its early harvest makes it especially helpful during the monga period,” said Md. Sohir Uddin, deputy director of Panchagarh DAE. Three other crops can be cultivated on the same land after cultivation this variety of rice, he added.
Farmer Sufia Begum said “I cultivated drought tolerant aman paddy on a bigha (one bigha is equal to 33.06 acres of land) of land which cost me about Tk. 3,500 and got 20 maunds of paddy in return. It has brought good profit and become very helpful for my family during the current drought period”, she added. Several farmers of the village said they cultivated the drought tolerant paddy on their lands and got good yield.