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BSS
  20 Jan 2022, 15:07

Bed planting wheat farming gains popularity in Rajshahi region

     By Dr Aynal Haque

     RAJSHAHI, Jan 20, 2022 (BSS) - As a result of much interest among the
farmers and others concerned, acreage of wheat farming through using bed-
planting has gained popularity in the region, including its vast barind
tract, for the last couple of years.

     In the current season, the wheat farmers are expecting better yield like
the previous year through adopting the bed plantation system.

     Not only in the wheat farming, the farmers were seen to adopt the method
in some other seasonal crops like mungbean, maize, potato and lentil next
season.

     Some of the farmers, scientists and researchers narrated the success
story while talking to BSS here yesterday. They revealed that raised-bed
planting of wheat is advantageous in areas where ground water level is
receding and herbicide-resistant weeds are creating a problem.

     Farmers, Anwar Hossain and Yousuf Ali, of Nandigram village under
Durgapur Upazila of the district said that they got two bed- planter machines
from Regional Wheat Research Center (RWRC) and cultivated wheat on around 250
bighas of land last year. They harvested 5/7 mounds more yield from per bigha
of land than the conventional system.

     The donation inspired them to purchase two machines. By which, they
brought around 450 bighas under wheat farming in the current season.

     Besides, they have become machinery service providers and are doing
business and making money through sowing seeds on others lands. Similarly,
the landowners are also getting benefits in the system.

     The farmers, however, said they need subsidies to purchase adequate
planters for large-scale expansion of the wheat and other crops farming in
the region.

     Dr Ilias Hossain, Principal Scientific Officer of Bangladesh Wheat and
Maize Research Institute, told BSS that the wheat was cultivated on around
0.16 million hectares of land in the region this year and 5,000 hectares of
those were brought under the bed-plantation method. He expected that the
wheat farming in the modern system will be increased next season.

     For planting wheat on beds, a tractor drawn bed planter is used. The bed
planter is mounted at the back of a medium size tractor. In one pass of a
tractor, the front big lines of planter make two beds and three furrows and
seed drill at the back sow three or four rows of wheat and heavy iron bar
behind it close the seeded rows and smoothen the beds.

     Bed planting improves water distribution and irrigation efficiency,
gives better results in using fertilizers and pesticides and reduces weed
infestation and crop lodging. It saves crops from disturbance from rats,
Hossain opined.

     The pattern helps farmers save 30 percent irrigation water and 30 to 40
percent of seeds and fertilisers.

     To maintain sound soil health, it could be advisable to grow rice using
a different system in order to improve compatibility between monsoon rice and
upland winter crops.

     The farmers of the area said they need help to buy planters for large-
scale expansion of the wheat and other crops farming in the region. For this
method, a tractor drawn bed planter is needed.

     Meanwhile, more than 4.03 lakh tonnes of wheat are expected to be
produced from around 1.33 lakh hectares of land during the current season in
all eight districts of the division.     Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE) has set the target of
producing 3.56 lakh tonnes of wheat from 95,210 hectares of land in four
districts of Rajshahi Agricultural Zone, while 47,735 tonnes from 37,570
hectares in four districts of Bogura Agricultural Zone. 

 

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