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Notes on Inter Cultivation Operation

Notes on Inter Cultivation Operation

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Inter Cultivation:

  • Inter-cultivation refers to cultivation practices carried out after crop sowing.
  • Also known as after operations.
  • Three important after cultivation processes: Thinning and gap filling, weeding and hoeing, and earthing up.

Thinning and Gap Filling:

  • Thinning and gap filling aim to maintain an optimal plant population.
  • Thinning involves removing excess plants to leave healthy seedlings.
  • Gap filling fills gaps by sowing seeds or transplanting seedlings where early-sown seeds did not germinate.
  • Typically practiced one week to a maximum of 15 days after sowing.
  • In dryland agriculture, gap filling precedes thinning.
  • It's a mid-season correction strategy to mitigate plant stress.

Weeding and Hoeing:

  • Weeding is the removal of unwanted plants.
  • Weeding and hoeing are simultaneous operations.
  • Hoeing involves disturbing the topsoil with small hand tools and improves soil aeration.

Earthing Up:

  • Earthing up is relocating soil from one side of a ridge closer to the crop.
  • Done around 6-8 weeks after sowing or planting in wide-spaced and deep-rooted crops like sugarcane, tapioca, and banana.

Other Inter Cultivation Practices:

  • Harrowing: Stirring or scraping the surface soil between crop rows using tools or implements.
  • Roguing: Removing plants of a different variety mixed with the same crop to maintain purity, often practiced in seed production.
  • Topping: Removing terminal buds to stimulate auxiliary growth, commonly done in cotton and tobacco.
  • Propping: Providing support to prevent lodging, often practiced in sugarcane by tying cane stalks from adjacent rows together.
  • De-trashing: Removing older leaves from sugarcane crops.
  • De-suckering: Removing axillary buds and branches that are non-essential for crop production and nutrient removal, as seen in tobacco.


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