Mulberry Agronomy Section

 

 

SCIENTIST:

 

1.Dr.S. Rajaram, Scientist-D

2Dr.Monica Chaudhuri, Scientist-D

 

OBJECTIVES:

     To conduct research and developmental work for improvement in quality mulberry leaf productivity by evolving appropriate irrigated and rainfedagronomical packages for high yielding mulberry varieties from time to time.

 

To develop cost-effective mulberry cultivation technology.

 

Promotion of eco -friendly technologies, maintenance of soil health and redress of agro-ecological condition with curtailment of inorganic fertilizers in mulberry cultivation.

 

 ACHIEVEMENTS:   

        Developed complete agronomical package of practices for mulberry cultivation under irrigated condition in Gangetic plains of West Bengal, both inorganic fertilizer- based and organic fertilizer-based like, biofertilizers i.e.,Nitrofert and Phosphofert, Vermicompost (VC) /quality compost, greenmanuring/leguminous cover crop through INM package. Commercial production of both the biofertilizers and limited production of Vermicompost/quality compost for farm use are being continued.

        Developed integrated nutrient management package through INM system for mulberry cultivation under rainfed condition.

        Developed eco-friendly technologies for mulberry cultivation like greenmanuring, leguminous cover crop etc.

       Developed weed management system by leguminous crop like, Cowpea in mulberry cultivation.

         Potentiality of Vermicompost and improved organic manure (compost) has been proved to be effective in mulberry cultivation; standardized the method of preparation of Vermicompost and bulk production of VC is being continued.

        Season- specific suitable intercrops have been identified suited to the available duration of mulberry crop in each season for better additional income.

        An organic farming system of mulberry cultivation has also been attempted.

 

 

TECHNOLOGIES PROMOTED:

 

              For cultivation of improved mulberry varieties like S-1 & S-1635 with wider spacing of 60x60 cm2 (pit system) is recommended under irrigated conditions inGangetic plains of West Bengal.

              For quick establishment and healthy plantation, in stead of cuttings, 4-5 months old saplings, grown in nursery are recommended for raising new plantation.

              For raising of saplings in nursery, inoculation of AM fungi is recommended in nursery beds for infestation in mulberry roots with increased vigour, growth, root proliferation and curtailment of phosphate.

              Easy technique for quick quality compost making has been standardized.

              Quick recycling of rearing and farm waste through vermicomposting has also been standardized.

              Green manuring with Sunnhemp or Dhaincha during summer and cowpea or Rice bean as leguminous cover crop during winter have been found promising to improve mulberry leaf productivity and soil health.

              Water use efficiency method of irrigation through alternate furrow system has been recommended for mulberry cultivation.

              A new agronomical package has been developed for maintenance of chawkigarden.

              Promotion of mulching technique with locally available cheap organic materials like, ulu grass, straw, dry weeds, water hyacinth, coconut leaf, mulberry twigs etc. for increasing leaf productivity, soil moisture, leaf moisture and temperature conservation especially under rainfed condition.

              A new step up and step down pruning method with the maintenance of at least 15-20 cm height from ground level followed by training for quality leaf production in bush mulberry is recommended under irrigated conditions of West Bengal.

              Top clipping during severe winter as well as for chawki garden in case of excess leaf after using for chawki worms promotes quick maturity and nutritional quality of the leaves

 

ONGOING PROJECTS:

 

1.     PPA 3215:  Study on mulberry based parallel multiple cropping under irrigated condition (Oct., 04 to Dec., 08).

2.     PPA3360: Improvement of leaf productivity through antitranspirantsapplication in mulberry under rainfed condition. (Apr.06-Mar.10)

3.      PPA3362: Effect of variations in planting geometry on mulberry canopy development, quality and quantity of leaf (March, 2006 to March, 2010)

MICROPROJECT - I: Commercial Production of Azotobacter biofertilizer.

MICROPROJECT - II: Commercial Production of Arbuscular biofertilizer.

BULK PRODUCTION OF VERMICOMPOST:  For farm use

CONCLUDED PROJECTS:

1.     PPA001: Effect of different systems of spacings and different doses of fertilizers on the yield and quality of mulberry leaf. (Jul., 1991 to Sep., 1997).

Among the four evolved HYVs, S-1, S-1635, C-1730 and S-1708, S-1635 out yielded all other varieties at the recommended doses of FYM & NPK.

 

2.  PPF001: Development of mulberry garden for chawki rearing (Aug. 1993 to Apr., 1996)

An agronomical package for development and maintenance of chawki garden under irrigated conditions of Gangetic plains of West Bengal with nutritional management comprising FYM: N:P:K @ 30 mt : 100 : 100 : 100 kg/ha/yr in split doses as per commercial silkworm cropping system was recommended to the field.

 

3.   PPA002Efficacy of different systems of irrigation  (Dec., 1994 to May, 1996).

 

The alternate furrow method of irrigation at IW/CPE 0.4 (3,00,000 L water/ha) while giving significantly higher leaf yield, saves 33.3% water compared to the earlier recommendation of 4, 50,000 L water/ha under flood method of irrigation.

 

4.     PPA003: Comparative studies of efficacy of slow releasing nitrogenous fertilizers and prilled urea in mulberry (Aug., 1991 to Nov., 1995).

 

Various forms of nitrogenous fertilizers tried, did not enhance the leaf yield compared toprilled urea. Application of 300 kg N /ha/yr significantly improved the leaf yield over 225 kg and 150 kg N/ha/yr.

 

5.    PPF003: Use of biofertilizers in mulberry cultivation (Nov. 1991 to Jun., 1996).

 

a)                           Azotobacter inoculation in mulberry field @ 20 kg/ha/yr supplemented with inorganic nitrogenous fertilizer @ 168 kg N/ha/yr is beneficial, economical and eco-friendly saving 50% of chemical source of nitrogen.

 

b) Inoculation of Azospirillum @ 20 kg/ha/yr supplemented with 225 kg of inorganic nitrogen revealed mulberry leaf yield at par with recommended dose of chemical nitrogenous fertilizer.

 

c)                           Application of Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi @ 200kg /ha in nursery for raising saplings followed by its transplantation in field or @ 75 kg/ha/3-4 years in case of established mulberry garden reduced the requirement of phosphatic fertilizer by 70-80% or 60-70% respectively to get similar leaf yield and better quality as obtained with recommended dose of phosphatic fertilizer. Besides, Glomus mosseae and Glomusfasciculatus were identified as best promising strains for irrigated and rainfed mulberry respectively.

 

6.               PPA 004 : Organic farming in mulberry (Feb., 1997 to May, 2002).

   An eco-friendly, cost effective and improved agronomical package for rainfed mulberry under Gangetic plains of West Bengal was developed. The package is comprising ofmycorrhizal mulberry saplings (AMF associated) planted at 90cm x 90cm spacing  along with the application of 50% reduced doses of P2O5 and N2 and full dose of K2O along with greenmanuring with Crotolaria juncea during rainy season and  cover crop with Vigna umbellataduring winter season. The leaf yield of S1 was found to be increased by 12% and reduced the cost of cultivation by 32% over traditional practice. 

            Besides, Vermicompost was found to be highly effective in qualityand quantity of mulberry leaf production, cocoon production and silk among other composts under rainfed condition and also found to be an ideal alternative of FYM.

 

7.    BHR Temp. 3: Evaluation of low cost carrier for economizing the commercial production of Azotobacter and phosphate solubilizing bacterial (PSBs)biofertilizers (Sept., 01 to Oct., 02).

 

Study revealed that a mixture of charcoal and fly ash to be cheaper carrier material with extended shelf life and could curtail the cost of commercial biofertilizers production upto40%.

 

8.   PPA 3224: Studies on weed management in mulberry. (Sep., 01 to Aug., 03).

 

Study revealed that Vigna sinensis (cow pea) was found to be promising in weed control up to 32.9% in existing mulberry garden without affecting leaf yield and quality with a reduction in expenditure by 41% towards digging cum weeding activity.

9.    PPA3248: Nutrient Management of newly evolved High Yielding mulberry varieties and its influence on growth and productivity of leaf and cocoon (May, 02 to Oct., 06).

Maximum leaf yield (41.58 mt/ha/yr) was found in S-1635 with the combination of 20mt, N350, P210 & K112 kg/ha/yr. Benefit-cost ratio is 2.47:1.

 

10. PPA 3249: Effect of plant nutrition systems (IPNS) in   mulberry crop (2001-05)

       The application of N 50% & P50% & replacement of FYM with vermicompost along withbiofertilizers in basal application showed better result in respect of leaf yield and quality.

 

11. PPA3223: Updation of improved package of practices for newly authorized mulberry varieties under irrigated condition (Sep., 2001 to Oct., 05).

A sustainable leaf production with reduced dose of N168:P30:K84 along withvermicompost, Azotobacter, AMF, PGR, alternate furrow irrigation and 15 cm height pruning could increase 13% leaf yield in S-1635 (6% in S-1) along with improvement in leaf quality, cocoon and reeling characters with 11.5% reduction in cost of mulberry cultivation.

 

PUBLICATIONS:

Published five sectional folders and pamphlets and over 70 scientific papers since 1991.