Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Upland rice cultivation in Kerala - Some information

While I was searching for upland rice information, could get some information scattered in the web, so thought of putting some information together. I haven't started upland rice cultivation yet, but planning to start it in the monsoon season 2012.

There are two types rice cultivation - Upland rice and Wetland rice. Most commonly seen rice cultivation is  Wetland rice where the paddy fields will be flooded with water and there will be always standing water in the field. Newly developed SRI (System of Rice Intensification) method require no standing water, but still the land has to be moist all the time, and field will be muddy all the time. Upland rice cultivation is done on fields where there is no provision to make standing water available. Even after rain, the water will be drained immediately. Upland rice is normally cultivated in the space available in coconut farms and other upland farm area near the houses.

While talking to some elders they told that upland rice was cultivated in Kerala during the start of monsoon, and it was a common practice. They plow the land and apply some cattle manure and then put seeds at the start of monsoon, typically by around May 15th. The seeds germinate and there is enough water from the rain in the month of June,July,August..and harvest is in August end or in September. Since there is no standing water weeds will be there, and some weeding may have to be done. But the seeds used for upland are special types which grows tall (4-4.5ft) and wild and hence weeds is not much of a problem. Also these seeds are drought tolerant so they are not much affected even with less rain, but the yield of these traditional seeds are less.

Some of the traditional varieties used are - Parambuvattan, Karuthamodan, Karanavara, Kalladiaryan etc...The yield of these are - Parambuvattan - 456Kg/Ha, Karuthamodan - 1632Kg/Ha, Karanavra - 2532Kg/Ha, Kalladiaryan - 2160Kg/Ha.

There are HYVs developed for upland rice and some of these are with their yields - Vaisak (3768Kg/Ha), Swarna Prabha (3900Kg/Ha) and Aiswarya ( 3840 kg/ha). But these HYVs are supposed to require higher input for their optimum production, may be more chemical fertilizers while traditional varieties are supposed to be low inputs.

Here is the source of these information
Some videos about upland rice cultivation


Jyothi said...

Upland cultivationif takenup at Palakkad will reap rich harvests by sheer area under cultivation. it can also be taken up using the NREGS labourers. Dept of Agriculture also allows all the subsidies in addition tothe Rs 10000/ha subsidy for fallow land cultivation. Please post ur observations regularly
Jyothi Agricultural officer Puduppariyaram

Nandakumar said...


Thanks for the comments and information about the subsidy. True, there is a huge potential for the upland rice cultivation in Palakkad, and lot of people can meet their rice requirements from this. Since the area of cultivation is nearer to home, women and kids also can help and much costly labor can be avoided. Awareness and access to seeds is two key areas to address.