Agriculture Corner

Integrated Pest Management in Agriculture


Pest management has always taken important position while planning and organizing farm management. Climate change has introduced many new kinds of pest that didn’t exist before or not present in a particular place, but they have got suitable climatic condition now. This has increased the responsibilities of agriculturists all-round the globe to find against pest so that goal of profit maximization can be achieved. A new concept in this regard is the Integrated Pest Management or IPM.

Integrated Pest Management is regarded as the most important pest control principle on which the goal of sustainable crop production and crop protection is based. This technique equip the farmers to manage the pests in agriculture field in a cost effective, efficient and environmental friendly way that has also a wider social acceptability.

What is Integrated Pest Management?

United Nations Food and Agriculture and Organization (FAO) defines IPM as;

A pest management system that in the context of the associated environment and the population dynamics of the pest species, utilizes all suitable techniques and methods, in a compatible manner as possible and maintains the pest population at levels below those causing economic injury

Important Aspects of Integrated Pest Management

Following are few aspects that should be given due importance while crafting a sound IPM technology for agriculture farm.

  • In developing countries, agriculture is practiced widely by small and marginal farmers who are poor. So while designing IPM for an area, low input cost should be in mind so to make IPM adaptable by wide range of farmers and farming community.
  • Farmers should be trained regarding the efficient use of inputs (pesticide) so that objective of cost effectiveness is achieved.
  • The IPM should be designed in such a manner to bring down the pest population in agriculture field to a level below the injury level.
  • Technologies developed should be environmentally friendly. This is because, we have polluted our environment enough already, that more damage will bring disastrous impact on human health.
  • Keeping in view the international demand of organic food, the IPM tech applied should not cause any kind of hindrances in the way of exports.
  • Conservation of biodiversity should be given importance.
  • Integrated Pest Management technology should ensure that it will pose no harm to human, animals, friendly insects and birds.

Cite this Article in APA Style as:

[box type=”note” align=”aligncenter” ]Rahman, M. A. (2018, March 03). Integrated Pest Management in Agriculture [Blog Post]. Retrieved from[/box]


Agriculture Corner

Preventive Measures for Weed Control in Agriculture


Weeds are always a piece of headache for the farming community all over the world. This plant not only competes for the nutrients in the soil with the main crops in the field but also cause serious damage to the health of plants. In agriculture, great attention has been devoted to curtail the growth of weeds in the agricultural fields. Each year, new and innovative measures are introduced to cope with weed issues. This article will present four basic but effective, efficient and easy to apply preventive measures for weed control in agriculture sector. The preventive measures presented here are also equally applicable in other types of farming like vegetable gardening, horticultural crops and orchards etc. The preventive measures include;

  1. Using weed free seeds.
  2. Applying weed free manure.
  3. Using weed free agricultural engineering equipment during ploughing and harvesting.
  4. Clean irrigation water passages in and around the agriculture fields.

4 Preventive Measures for Weed Control

Using Weed Free Seeds

In agriculture as well as in vegetable farming, it is a common observation that weed seed get mixed with the seed of main crop. This happens mainly due to poor management and also lack of farmer’s ability to differentiate between weed seed and crop seed. An example of this case is Mirabilis jalapa. This is a common weed in waste lands and is similar in look with Papaya seed. It often gets mixed involuntarily with Papaya seed and results in poor quality papaya seeds.

Applying Weed Free Manure

Manure is one of the big carriers of weed seeds and is also the chief agent of weed problem in agriculture sector. A good example in this case is of Parthenium hyster. This weed flourish extensively in and around manure or where these is abundance of organic matter. After getting into manure, it multiplies very fast and produces innumerable seeds. When this manure is bought to the agriculture field and spread on the soil not only manures mixes with the soil, but also the seeds of this weed spread and start growing along with the main crop. So, it is easy ad effective to ensure that the manure you are collecting for agricultural field is weed free and collected from clean place.

Using Weed Free Agricultural Engineering Equipment during Ploughing and Harvesting

These equipments are major carriers of dispersing weed seeds, stolons, underground nuts and bulbs of perennial weeds. These tools not only spread weeds but in some cases are the agents of introducing new varieties of weeds in a place where they don’t exist previously. This is because, all farmers don’t have access or capacity to purchase these equipment. So they rent these machines. If the machines are not cleaned properly before operation, then there is a fair chance that seeds of weeds from some other areas get introduce in their field.

Clean Irrigation Water Passages in and Around the Agriculture Fields

It is also a fast and easiest way for weeds to get spread through wider and long ranged areas. Seeds of Portulaca oleracea are easily dispersed through water channels to long range areas and end up in vegetable fields like Okra, Brinjal, Garlic, Radish etc. These spread in large numbers and hence its get very difficult to control them. So it is advised that proper and regular cleaning of irrigation water passages or channels should be carried out at regular intervals so minimize the spreading of weeds.

Cite this Article in APA Style as:

[box type=”note” align=”aligncenter” ]Rahman, M. A. (2018, March 02). Preventive Measures for Weed Control in Agriculture[Blog Post]. Retrieved from[/box]

Agriculture Corner

Crop Rotation in Agriculture


In agriculture, crop rotation refers to growing of crops that are different from each other in successions on farm field in a specific period of time. In other words, it is growing of dissimilar crop or no crop during sequential seasons on the same of piece of land. The objective of crop rotation is to get maximum profit from investing minimum or making least investment without harming the fertility of soil.

Historian dates back crop rotation to 6000 B.C. when it was practiced by the farmers of Middle East. Interestingly, it is also believed that those farmers did not know the science behind this practice still the follow it. The logic is simple. It is practiced because if one cultivates same kind of crop over several years, the soil becomes weak and infertile. That same crop requires same kind of nutrients each year. And if crop rotation is not practiced, that kind of nutrients becomes exhausted. These nutrients have an additional duty of keeping the soil stable in terms of keeping the soil texture. In case of same crop growing again and again without crop rotation, the soil becomes susceptible to soil erosion due to weaker bonding between soil particles.

One cycle of crop rotation may acquire 1 or more farming years to complete. For irrigated areas, the farming year is of 12 months. However in rain fed or Barani areas, farming year is restricted to that period of time during which there is adequate availability of soil water.

Crop rotation is carried our extensively and is a common practice. Farm experts are of the view to rotate crops is such a manner that one cereal crop is succeeded by the legumes crop so that crop fertility remain stable.

Benefits of Crop Rotation

  • Effective tool to control pest.
  • Adequate management of nitrogen in soil or create nitrogen balance in soil.
  • Keep soil safe from wind and water erosion.
  • Keep greenhouse gas emissions at sustainable levels.
  • Increased soil productivity.
  • Minimize the use of pesticides thus reducing water and soil pollution.
  • Keeps the soil structure good.
  • Carbon storing ability increases.

Cite this Article in APA Style as:

[box type=”note” align=”aligncenter” ]Rahman, M. A. (2018, March 01). Crop Rotation in Agriculture [Blog Post]. Retrieved from[/box]


Agriculture Corner

Special Purpose Crops in Agriculture


In agriculture field, specifically in agronomy, there are various crops that are grown with a special purpose under certain circumstances. As these crops have to serve a special purpose, so they are termed as special purpose crops. These special purpose crops crops have great importance in agriculture not only because they provide food for consumption to both humans and livestock, but also they help farmers to safeguard their economic benefits.

Generally, 7 crops are included in special purpose crops classification. These are;

  1. Green Manure Crops
  2. Silage Crops
  3. Catch Crops
  4. Soilage Crops or Green Chop Crops
  5. Relay Crops
  6. Companion Crops
  7. Cover Crops

Green Manure Crops

These kinds of crops are grown to increase the fertility of soil. These crops are grown and then mix in the soil during ploughing. Sometime these are grown, cut and left in the ground for an prolonged period prior to applying tillage operations.


Brassica, Vetch, Clover, Alfalfa.

Silage Crops

These are the crops grown for livestock and dairy consumption. The crops are grown, cut and preserved as silage. They are cut in succulent condition and through partial fermentation, silage is made. The advantage is continuous supply of fodder to animals during dry periods or when green fodder is not available.


Grasses, Miaze, Oat.

Catch Crops

These are also called as critical crops as they are grown to fill in the space in case when main crop failed due to any reason or sowing of major crop is delayed for some reason. They are grown to cover economic less to some extent.


Sorghum and Maize for Fodder

Soilage Crops or Green Chop Crops

These are green fodder crops for the livestock and dairy animals. The Soilage crops are grown and harvested in green form and still succulent. These are fed directly to the animals in the farm.



Relay Crops

It is a crop that is planted as a second crop in the agriculture fields, however after the first crop has achieved its reproductive growth but is not ready to harvest.


The sowing of Sugarcane in Sugar Beet is an example of relay cropping.

Companion Crops

Companion crops are those crops in agriculture that are grown together. Like green legumes is grown mix with grasses. The objective is to increase the forage production as well as its quality. As these are grown together, so they are termed as companion crops.


Maize – Red Beans (Lobia) and Barley-Oat

Cover Crops

These crops are grown with the objective to keep the soil safe from erosion. these are planted to cover the ground so that water and wind erosion don’t harm the soil plus it also safeguard nutrient loss by leaching. These are mostly spreading in nature plants i.e. the plant grown and cover large area of ground.


Mash, Mong Bean, Grasses.

Cite this Article in APA Style as:

[box type=”note” align=”aligncenter” ]Rahman, M. A. (2018, February 27). Special Purpose Crops in Agriculture[Blog Post]. Retrieved from[/box]

Agriculture Corner

On-season and Off-Season Tillage


An outline about tillage is given in Introduction to Soil Tillage and further, Objectives of Tillage were presented in previous article. This article deals with the two categories of tillage based on the ‘time of requirement’ or seasonal requirement. These are;

  1. On Season Tillage
  2. Off-Season Tillage

1. On-Season Tillage

On-Season tillage is carried out for raising the crops in the same season.  In other words, this type of tillage is done at the beginning of the crop season. On season tillage may be regarded as the tillage carried out for preparatory cultivation and after cultivation.

     Preparatory Tillage

This tillage is carried out before sowing the crop so that beds can be prepared for cultivation of crop. The objective is to open the soil deeply, loose the hard soil rocks, aeration, remove weeds and larvae of pests to achieve the desirable tilth. It has further two types that are primary tillage and secondary tillage.

Primary Tillage

The tillage that is performed after harvesting the crop to bring the necessary changes in the soil condition for making land fit for cultivation for next crop is called as primary tillage or ploughing. In primary tillage, the compact soil is opened. This is done with the help of various kinds of agricultural engineering tools like Mold Board Plough, Tractor, Power Tiller, Bose Plough or Country Plough.

Secondary Tillage

Secondary tillage is performed to bring a good soil tilth after the primary tillage. In Secondary Tillage, finer or light sort of operation are carried out such as cleaning the soil, breaking the soil clods and incorporation of fertilizer or manure in the soil. Planking and Harrowing are conducted for Secondary Tillage operations.

     After Cultivation

After cultivation type of tillage is carried out when the crop is in standing position i.e. after the sowing or planting the crop. This means, this tillage is performed before harvesting the crop. This is also called Inter-Cultivation.  Tillage operations carried out in this type of tillage are weeding, hoeing, drilling, earthing up or side dressing of fertilizer. Weeders, Spade and Hoe are used in after cultivation tillage.

2. Off-Season Tillage

Conditioning of soil is called as off-season tillage. The purpose is to condition the soil suitably for the forthcoming main season crop. Post-Harvest Tillage, Winter or Summer Tillage and Fallow Tillage are various off-season tillage operations.

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[box type=”note” align=”aligncenter” ]Rahman, M. A. (2018, February 10). On-Season and Off-Season Tillage[Blog Post]. Retrieved from[/box]

Agriculture Corner

Principles of Agricultural Extension


Principles in any field of knowledge provide the foundation stone of laws and manners of carrying out research and development activities in a systematic way to achieve the desired goals and objectives. In agricultural extension, there are also certain principles on which the subject matter is based on. These principles guide the agricultural extension officer and service provider to work in an organized way to ensure smooth flow of agricultural extension service at the door step of farmers. By following these principles, the importance of agricultural extension increases many folds. The principles are;

1 Individuals are at Core of a Society

It is a fact that individuals are the building block of an economy and nation. An individual is a part of a group. Different groups work and interact together to make a society and as a result a nation is built. So the significance of an individual cannot be denied.

By keeping this in mind, the first principle of agriculture extension is to recognize the importance of each farmer in a community or village and he should be contacted individually. Every farmer has different problem and require peculiar solution to the problem. The agricultural extension officer has to contact the farmers individually instead of meeting them in groups. Though gatherings are required in certain activities, but contacting individual farmers is proved beneficial in prospering agriculture sector.

2 Providing Education

Being a human being, education is a basic right of every individual. On the other hand, the rural citizens (mostly farmers) have exploring nature and they are always ready to get new information related to their farming activity.

For an area, agricultural extension service should be designed in such a manner that it caters the needs of small as well as large farmers in a village. Agricultural extension officer should be equipped with modern and innovative knowledge so that they can transfer this knowledge to the farming community well on time. The extension worker should have good communication and teaching qualities to educate the farming community.

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Vegetable Gardening

4 Natural Bug Repellents in Gardening


The most important thing I have learnt from my 10 years gardening experience so far is the controlling of weeds and bugs in the garden whether it is vegetable garden or flowering garden. I have covered the control of weeds in one of my previous articles. Another query I receive a lot from my readers is regarding what are natural bug repellents in the gardening niche?

Also Read : Five Cheap DIY ways to Kill Home and Kitchen Garden Weeds

In pest control domain, bugs are the mega-annoying creatures that not only hurt darling plants and your feelings, but also their presence in any part of your home is irritating. There are many bug repellents available in the market, but being proponent of organic control of weeds and bugs, I prefer to control bugs through natural bug repellents.

If you are dealing with bugs in the garden, then top notch strategy is to use those plants that have property of being natural bug repellents. This article will discuss 4 natural bug repellents for dirt lovers. Even if you have pest control in mind, that is, controlling bugs in any other part of home, the below list of 4 natural bug repellent plants will be equally beneficial.

1 Basil

In a vegetable garden, utilizing crisp basil as natural bug repellent is a good strategy. To make a creepy crawly repellent shower,  basic formula calls for pouring 4 ounces of bubbling water into a compartment holding 4 to 6 ounces of perfect, new basil leaves (stems can be connected). Giving leaves a chance to soak for a few hours, expelling the leaves and pressing the majority of the leaves’ dampness into the blend will make the solution stronger.

At that point altogether blend 4 ounces of (shoddy!) vodka with the basil-water blend. Store in the icebox and apply as a shower while going outside. Make certain to keep the shower far from your eyes, nose and mouth.

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Agriculture Corner

Classification of Crop Plants in Agriculture: Seasonal & Special Purpose Crops


Like agronomic classification, crops are further classified into two categories based on season and special purpose for which they are grown. This kind of classification allows easy understanding of crops, characteristics and their use accordingly for the agriculture students and knowledge seekers.

This article is the extension of the previous article that presented 10 crops based on agronomic classification. Before discussing each crop in seasonal and special purpose classification system, let’s get familiar with the names of crops in each category. 

Agronomic Classification of Crops in Agriculture

In Seasonal classification, crops are divided into 4 groups. These are;

  • Rabi Crops
  • Zaid Rabi Crops
  • Kharif Crops
  • Zaid Kharif Crops

In Special Purpose classification scheme, crops are divided into 5 groups. These are;

  • Catch Crops
  • Trap Crops
  • Silage Crops
  • Cover Crops
  • Soiling Crops

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Agriculture Corner

Soil Pollution and Future Demands from Agriculture Sector


Soil pollution is a condition in which soil become rich in pollutants, contaminants and toxic materials and it poses threat to human life, agriculture, animals and other macro and microorganisms. In other words, soil pollution is the beginning of death of soil, failing to sustain any kind of production in terms of agriculture and wildlife on it. Arable land turns into desert land and threats food security ultimately.

Reasons of Soil Pollution

The reason of soil pollution is both natural and man-made. Global warming, climate change are regarded as natural factors of soil pollution while, excess usage of fertilizers, pesticides, weedicides and herbicides is damaging the natural order of soil, thus polluting it and making it weak. It is a global phenomenon that soils are becoming less and less productive and fertile due to degrading organic matter.

Natural Causes of Soil Pollution

Among many, common natural causes of soil pollution is the natural amassing of compounds in soil resulting from imbalances between atmospheric deposition and leaking away with precipitation water. This is common in arid environments where concentration and accumulation of per-chlorate in soils results in soil pollution.

In some cases, thunderstorm also creates environment for soil pollution. This happens when chlorine source or metallic objects present in the soil use energy generated from thunderstorm to generate per-chlorate in the soil.

Man-made Causes of Soil Pollution

  • Accident leaks and spills.
  • Mining activities.
  • Agricultural activities resulting in release of pesticide, fertilizer etc.
  • Transport activities releasing toxic smoke and emissions.
  • Cracked paint chips.
  • The storage of waste in landfills.

Soil Erosion Causing Death of Soil to Sustain Agriculture

Soil erosion is another factor causing soil pollution. The United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) stated recently that 75 billion tons of soil which is almost equivalent to 10 million hectares of land is lost due to erosion, water-logging and salination annually. On top of it, additional 20 million hectares of land is abandoned and not under any cultivation due to poor quality soil and degradation.

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Agriculture Corner

Proper Crop Selection for Arid or Dryland Agriculture


In Arid Agriculture or dryland farming systems, selection of proper crop is critical to generate healthy revenue. For selection of appropriate crop for your farm, there are numerous factors to be considered before actually entering into farming business. While farmers of irrigated land may select their crops on the basis of profitability, a dryland or arid farmer has to select appropriate crop considering two factors. These are

  • Adaptability in arid environment
  • Profitability

Thus an arid farmer has a lot on stake when it comes to farming. Any deviation in regular pattern of rainfall can bring loss to farmer’s investment. Agriculture is gambling, but arid agriculture is far more than just gambling. This article will discuss important factors that should be kept in mind before starting any agriculture activity in any arid zone of the world.

1. Ocular Screening of the Land

To start farming in arid lands, an ecological skimming should be carried out. This is not a technical thing. It just include a deep ocular scrutiny and other approaches to acquire evidences on the biotic factor that have direct or indirect link with the  plant growth and its yield, climatic conditions prevailing in the surrounding area, soil properties, infrastructural needs and accessibility. Summarizing, the rule should be to know your farm then select the right crop.

2. Disease History of the Area

Here it is important to mention that a biotic scan will aid in knowing any symptoms of diseases prevailing in the area. In the case of diseases, disease resistant varieties can be selected for farming and susceptible crops may be omitted.

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