Intensive type of cropping pattern replacing age long traditional crops in 8 N dists

Nilphamri Correspondent :A newly introduced intensive type of cropping pattern is gradually replacing the age long traditional cropping pattern in eight northern districts of Rangpur division making the farmers benefited as it enabling them to cultivate short duration four crops in a cycle all the year round. In traditional cropping pattern, farmers can cultivate three crops one after another in a year.This newly introduced cropping pattern focusing firstly on short term amon paddy like BU dhan or BINA dhan-7 or BRRI dhan-56 and BRRI dhan-57 with duration from 100-102 days, secondly mustered seeds like BARI sharisha-14 or potato with 60-75 days duration, thirdly they focus on cultivation of mungbean having duration 45-50 days and finally short duration aus paddy called pariza and some others with duration 90 days The traditional pattern enabling farmers to cultivate three crops like long duration amon paddy, then potato and thirdly late variety of boro paddy throughout the year round.Sources said that the new cropping pattern is introduced as a project by Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Agriculture University (BSMRAU) and is being implemented in the field level by non-government organization (NGO) Rangpur Dinajpur Rural Service (RDRS).Krishi Gobeshona Foundation is providing financial support for the project and agriculture department of government providing monitoring and other supports.Deputy Director (DD) of department of agriculture extension (DAE) in the district SM Sirajul Islam told that the new cropping pattern increases productivity of land as the biomass of mungbean and mustered is contributing to increase organic matter in soil.For getting maximum output, farmers utilizing minimum resources and this new cropping pattern also creating employment for farm labourers in lean period commonly known as monga. Farmers and agriculture experts informed that new cropping pattern increases about 20% productivity and gross return by about 70%, ultimately contributing to country’s food security. Environmental co-coordinator of NGO RDRS informed that currently 1750 farmers in 8-northern districts of Rangpur division like Rangpur, Dinajpur, Nilphamari, Gaibandha, Kurigram, Lalmonirhat, Thakurgaon and Panchgarh are now doing farming with this new cropping pattern and getting benefit greatly and the number of interested farmers increasing. He also informed that in traditional three crops method farmers applied irrigation highest 35 times while cultivating boro paddy in one hector land This means that the withdrawal of ground water is 12.4 to 20.9 million liters per hector. Experts opined that extensive irrigation stressing country’s water level, which in certain areas is dropping by 4-5 feet a year.However in newly introduced four cropping patterns, highest ten times irrigation is needed altogether helping to keep ecological balance.Farmers Dulu Mia (45), Brojeswar (40), Ramchandra (35), Zayedul (30) of Naditari village in sador upazila of Nilphamari district expressed enthusiasm as saying that their earning have been increased in new cropping pattern with logistic support from RDRS.Day labourers Nibaron Chandra, Sadekul, Atikur and others of Mirganj village of Jaldhaka upazila of the district said that the new cropping pattern had created job opportunity for them in lean period as short duration amon paddy harvested at this time. In the past they were compelled to sit idle and starve at this period, as there was no job.Nasiruddin, agriculture officer of RDRS in Nilphamari told that the new cropping pattern is proved effective to eliminate tobacco cultivation in as it gives yield shortly and more profitable comparatively.

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