Practices of Crop Production
Food is the major source of energy. Every living organism on this planet needs food to remain alive and to continue all other essential life processes. Plants are the most source of food on which both humans and animals depend. We cannot imagine life without food.
With the rapidly growing population, demand for more food, loss of produced crops, and other problems within the agricultural output are the most reasons for the scarcity of food and are the most important concern in some parts of the planet facing today. This has led to a rise within the requirement of strategies which will help within the management of the crops produced.
Crop production may be a common agricultural practice followed by worldwide farmers to grow and produce crops to use as food and fibre. This practice includes all the feed sources that are required to take care of and produce crops. Listed below are few practices used during crop production.
Preparation of Soil, Sowing of Seeds, Irrigation, Application of manure, pesticides, and fertilizers to the crops, Protecting and Harvesting Crops, Storage and Preserving the produced Crops.
The ultimate stages of crop production are harvesting and storage.
Harvesting requires art and practice because an outsized proportion of crops are often lost thanks to improper methods of harvesting. Another concern besides harvesting is storage. Storage of grains is to tend utmost priority as improper storage may result within the destruction of crops being by pests or unfavourable environmental conditions.
Once the crop is matured or fully ripen, they're cut and gathered (Reaping) which are collectively called as harvesting. Harvesting depends on many factors like season, crop variety, maturity period, etc. Over-irrigation, irregular sunlight can prolong ripening of crop
which thus delays the harvesting time. Early harvesting causes loss of unripened grains while delayed harvesting results in shedding off of grains. Besides this, rodents and even birds eat the grains. Therefore regular examination of the crop is necessary as harvesting period approaches. The golden yellow colour is that the indication of ripened crops for paddy, rice, and wheat.
Manually harvesting is completed by using sickles but it's a tedious job also as time-consuming. In recent times, machines called harvesters are used for harvesting, especially in large-scale farming.
Followed by harvesting, threshing of the crop has got to be performed. Threshing is that the process, in which, the collected grains are separated from the chaff by beating or by the thresher. In small-scale farming, chaff and grains are separated from one another by a process called winnowing. Harvesting is taken into account as a festival in most a part of the country. It is a time of joy where the fruits of the diligence of farmers inherit reality. Some of the harvesting festivals are Pongal, Bihu, etc.
In the case of small-scale cultivation, farmers use the harvested crop for themselves while large-scale production is especially for marketing. Thus the cultivators have to store the grains. For this, proper storage space has to be arranged. Inadequate space for storing and improper storage methods can cause an enormous grain loss. In addition to pest and rodents, microbes like bacteria, fungi, and environmental conditions like moisture and temperature might attack the stored grains. Therefore, proper treatment is required before the grains are stored. Rodent infestations can be prevented by pesticides. A moist environment leads to fungal growth on grains. This can be avoided by proper drying of grains in sunlight. Another method is fumigation where chemicals are wont to prevent bacteria and other microorganisms. After proper treatments, grains need to be stored in gunny bags or granaries and deposited in godowns.
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