Impact of Weed and Nutrient Management on Kharif Crops
Adequate plant nutrition is an important factor to help crops grow vigorously and have a high yield. While it is an important contributor to high-yielding crops, plant nutrition also plays an important role in promoting weed growth. Weeds are unwanted plants that grow along the main crops and take away their nutrition. Weeds are usually plants that grow out of time and out of place.
Importance of Weed and Nutrient Management
A wealth of studies suggest that during their early growth stages, weeds are capable of taking up more nutrients than crops. Not only do they compete with the crop for nutrition, but also act as a breeding ground for insects and diseases.
Moreover, they can actually accumulate higher concentrations of many plant nutrients compared to crops. Depleting the nutrient content of the soil, weed growth can actually affect crop yield. Also, the presence of weed seeds in the final produce lowers the crop’s commercial value, hence affecting the farmers directly. Decreasing crop yields, weeds also result in increased production costs,
lower product quality, and interference with the harvests. Besides, they also impede irrigation water flow, interfere with pesticide application, and harbour disease causing organisms. Therefore, for crops to grow vigorously and have a high yield, it is essential that the nutrients go to the crops and not the weeds.
This is where Weed Management comes into play.
Efficient weed management involves managing the weed population and development in such a way that it doesn’t cause economic or organic damage to the crops. Helping the crops to reach its yield potential, efficient weed management becomes even more important in a situation where large numbers of people are dependent on limited resources and agricultural land for crop production.
Impact of Weed Management
Slowly, steadily, and inconspicuously, weeds extend their harmful effects to the crops, and the changes are almost irreversible. Let’s have a detailed look at the overall impact of weed management, and the lack of it.
- Without restrictions, weeds tend to compete with crops for nutrients, resulting in a substantial decrease in the yield. Whereas with efficient weed management, crops get the nutrition they need and yield reduction can be avoided.
- Increasing the irrigation requirement, weeds increase the cost of agriculture and hinder the progress of work. Timely weed management can drastically reduce irrigation requirements along with the cost of agriculture.
- Lack of weed management results in weed growth, and their presence can impair the purity of varieties by chance of cross pollination. This can be avoided through timely weed management. The purity of crop strains can also be retained this way.
Different Ways of Controlling Weed
Farmers deploy a range of different comprehensive methods to control and mitigate infestation in fields incorporating diverse techniques. The oldest and the most primitive way to deal with this problem is manual pulling. Most of the farmers today rely on different methods of weed control like:
- Preventative weed control,
- Cultural weed control,
- Mechanical weed control,
- Biological weed control and
- Chemical weed control.
Mentioned above are all ways to control weed growth. However, sustainable and organic agriculture requires a profound reconsideration of the approach as chemical residues can harm both humans and nature. Also, people today are more conscious about organic farming, and are well aware of its benefits. All such factors and more, make Biological Weed Management a remarkable tool for controlling weeds.
Biological Weed Management
Mother nature is a storehouse of different solutions to the many problems of mankind. Biological weed management has come forward as one such effective solution. It revolves around the concept of utilising the agents of nature for managing or suppressing the weed population. It involves employing weed enemies in their habitats. Another fine example of Biological Weed Management involves placing pathogen organisms like bacteria and fungi that attack certain species. The timely release of biological agents helps tackle the issue in a simple and eco-friendly way.
Pest Management Technologies
Pest management technologies include addition of organic manures like farm yard manure or green manures or oil cakes to the soil, increasing the antagonistic microorganisms in the soil. A sustained build up of antagonistic microorganisms reduces the population of soil-borne plant pathogens and the diseases caused by them. It also makes the plant strong to resist pests and disease attacks.
Krish-e’s Exclusive Services
Krish-e Farm Advisory Services
Farm advisory services through Krish-e app or Takneek Plot app and on-field visit of any Krish-e representative provides timely information to the farmer for weed and nutrient management. These advisories include application of pre and post emergence weedicides for weed management at the right stage of crop and weed.
Advisory services also include intercultural operations like hoeing and manual weeding at the right time for sustainable weed management.
Krish-e’s advisory services also includes soil-test based nutrient advisories which help the farmer to plan the purchase of required inputs like organic manures, inorganic fertilisers, biofertilizers, etc. The application pattern provided through Krish-e’s advisory services also helps the farmers in balanced application of nutrients at recommended timelines to avoid excessive use of any fertilisers.
Krish-e Rental Services
Krish-e also provides farm equipment for rent including small equipment, tillers or small tractor operated rotavators that are generally used for weed management in widely spaced planted crops like cotton and sugarcane. This will reduce competition of weeds and reduce subsequent losses caused by them.