From System of rice intensification technique boosts paddy yield :
"The System of Rice Intensification (SRI) has helped farmers in Tiruchi district to cope with an unreliable monsoon and shortage of farm labour, according to the district administration.
Speaking to The Hindu, District Collector T. Soundiah said the production cost of paddy under the new cultivation technique is in the range of Rs.2,000-3,000 a hectare, whereas it is close to Rs.10,000 under traditional cultivation methods. Where traditional methods of paddy cultivation yielded about two tonnes of paddy a hectare, under SRI farmers are able to get up to 6.7 tonnes a hectare.
The use of SRI is spreading in Tiruchi: the technique is being successfully implemented here on 20,000 ha out of a total of 70,000 ha under cultivation, according to data provided by the district administration.
“For many farmers, this has meant an additional income of Rs.25,000-30,000 per acre,” according to S. Sivaraj, Deputy Director, Agriculture, Central Government Schemes.
The SRI helps economise on resources use while maximising the yield.
“It requires a high level of farmland manure and a minimum quantity of seeds,” Mr. Sivaraj said. Only 2 kg of seeds were required per acre. The minimum age of seedlings would be eight to 12 days.
“Other important factors include wider spacing between seedlings and the use of the Cono-Weeder four times during the crop cycle,” Mr. Sivaraj said. Most important, SRI requires minimal use of water, according to Mr. Soundiah.
“The aim is to maintain the soil by wetting, not by flooding the fields as traditional cultivation methods suggest,” he said.
The district administration is implementing subsidy schemes for harvester and weeder machines to further boost productivity."
Earlier posts on SRI here and here.