The farmers in Nuh district depend on crop production as their primary occupation. However, due to lack of knowledge about use of balanced fertilizers in their farmlands, the quantity and quality of yields of the majority of farmers in the village remain limited. Quality of soil has also started degrading due to the non judicious use of urea and DAP.
Lukman is a farmer whose family depends on traditional methods of agriculture, but the low production of yield has broken his spirit to move forward with agriculture. Hence at the beginning of the rabi season, he was not particularly interested in cultivating mustard. As a part of the CSR-supported project implemented by S M Sehgal Foundation, numerous small group meetings with farmers were organized in his village in September and October 2021. Lukman attended a number of these meetings and learned about the usefulness of applying micronutrients in the farmlands for improving the quantity and quality of mustard yield. He expressed interest in participating in the demonstration of this technique using an improved package of practices. He was selected as a demonstration farmer and trained to apply micronutrients in a half-acre of his field. In the other half acre, he practiced his traditional method of mustard cultivation.
Within thirty days of sowing, Lukman noticed improved seed germination and plant size, and darker color in his demonstration plot, compared to the mustard in his control plot. Thus he gained confidence in using balanced fertilizers and gradually convinced his brothers to adopt the same practice in their farmlands as well. His brothers began cultivating about nine acres of land, using the improved package of practices in 2022. Lukman and his brothers are happy to witness the outcome of application of micronutrients in mustard cultivation. They have started motivating other farmers in Gabanspur to do the same, which had resulted in wider adoption of the modern package of practices.
Authors: Akshay Gilbert and Debika Goswami
(Akshay is project associate, Nuh and Debika is senior program lead, Local Participation and Sustainability)