Planting of Kharif crops have begun with the pre-Monsoon showers picking up pace across India. Early trends are indicating that farmers are opting for cotton, pulses and oil seeds. As on May 26, cotton area has been increased by 27% to 11.24 lakh hectares against 8.83 lakh hectares sown at the same time last year.
Out of 11.24 lakh hectares, 10.49 lakh hectares has been sown with Bt cotton and 0.746 lakh hectares with Non Bt varieties. Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan and Southern Karnataka are the states where cotton sowing is in full swing. In fact, in Haryana and Punjab almost 70-80% of the cotton sowing has been done.
Weather being favorable, farmers are proffering cotton on better realization recorded last year and are hoping for further hike in cotton MSP by Rs. 160 per quintal. The prospects for cotton looks better than the last year and overall area is expected to increase.
In Haryana, around 80%-90% sowing has been completed and most of the sown varieties are hybrids. So far, cotton has been sown in an area of 5.830 lakh hectares in Haryana that is up by more than 16% than the last year sowing of same time i.e. 5 lakh hectares. Out of 5.83 lakh hectares, 5.77 lakh hectares are sown with Bt varieties and 0.06 lakh hectares with non Bt varieties. All varieties have a crop duration of around 180-220 days.
In Haryana, around 168000 hectares has been sown in Sirsa, 99690 hectares in Hisar, 73140 hectares in Bhiwani, 68910 hectares in Fatehabad, 52500 hectares in Jind, 19660 hectares in Palwal and 17070 hectares in Mahendragarh.
As per Dr R D Kaushik, Former Professor-Haryana Agriculture University, Hisar, most preferred Non Bt or Desi varieties in the state are HD123, H505, LD327 and RG8. These are also called early varieties and sown during February to mid-March. The height of the early sown varieties is around one foot and crop is reported healthy.
Most preferred Bt varieties are 6488, 6588, Leocoat, Rasi 673 and RASI 651. These are called late varieties and are sown between April 20 to May 15 in irrigated areas and in un-irrigated areas, sowing are done in the first fortnight of June with the onset of Monsoon. The height of the late sown varieties is around 3-4 inches.
Almost 50% - 60% of the late variety crop in the district is at germination stage and this year germination percentage is slightly better than the last year as favorable weather has provided sufficient soil moisture.
Image credit - cotton market
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