Important topics covered in Crop Production and Management chapter in class 8:
- Introduction to crop production
- Type of crops
- Various agricultural practices
- Crop production
- Crop Protection
- Harvesting and Threshing
- Animal husbandry
Introduction to crop production:
- Every living organism on this earth needs food to perform various life processes to keep themselves alive.
- Autotrophs (plants) prepare their own food whereas heterotrophs (animals) depend on autotrophs or other heterotrophs for food.
- We require regular production, distribution of food, and proper management to ensure food for such a large population on this earth.
- When plants of the same kind are grown and cultivated at one place on a large scale to obtain food, clothing and other useful products is said to be crop.
- Different crops are:
Paddy, wheat, maize
Mustard, sunflower, groundnut
Mango, apple, banana
Pea, gram, bean
Cabbage, spinach, cauliflower
Types of crops
There are many types of crops based on different types of parameters. Some of the parameters are listed below. More we will read in next section of crop production and management.
On the basis of season of cultivation crops are of two types:
- Those crops which are grown during monsoon are said to be kharif crops.
- This time period is from June to September (in rainy season).
- Maize, cotton crops, millets are some example of kharif crops.
- At the beginning of the monsoon season, farmers sow these seeds.
- At the end of monsoon, these crops get matured thus, gets harvested.
- Paddy, groundnut, maize, cotton, are some examples of kharif crops.
- Those crops which are grown during winter season are said to be Rabi crops.
- This time period is from October to March
- At many places, vegetables and pulses are also grown during summer.
- Wheat, mustard, pea, gram, and linseed are some examples of Rabi crops.
Based on life span:
On the basis of lifespan of crops, they are divided into three types. They are;
- Their life cycle is completed in one year or a complete season.
- Wheat and pea are some examples of annual crops.
- Those crops which complete its cycle in two years or two seasons are said to be biennials.
- Carrot and radish are examples of biennials.
- Those crops which take several years to complete its cycle are said to be perennials.
- Pine and ginger are some examples of perennials.
- The branch of biology which deals with cultivating the soil, production of crops and rearing of animals is called agriculture.
- Early humans ate edible parts of the plants.
- They learnt and grow and started agricultural practices to live a settled life.
- Every activity performed by farmer for the cultivation of crops is said to be agricultural practices.
- In cultivation, their farmers need a different type of tools to perform various activities. We call these tools as agricultural implements.
Various agricultural implements used by farmers are:
- Seed drill
- Motor pumps
Different agricultural practices for crop production and management are:
- Preparation of soil
- Adding manure and fertilizers
- Protection from weeds
Now let’s discuss in detail about each topic.
Preparation of soil:
- The most important part in the cultivation of crops is preparation of soil for sowing seeds by loosening
- Farmers prepare the soil by ploughing or tilling in which involves breaking, loosening and uprooting weeds and aerating the soil.
- Then harrowing is done to destroy germinating weeds.
- Big lumps of soil are being broken down, which is called levelling.
Importance of preparation of soil:
- The loose soil allows the roots to penetrate and breathe easily inside the soil.
- Earthworms and microbes grow easily in the loosen soil which helps in better growth of crops.
- It also enables fertilizers to mix uniformly with the soil.
- The main measure of crop production and management is the preparation of soil.
Sowing of seeds:
- The process of scattering seeds in the field for growing crop is said to be sowing.
- The seed which is to be sown must be of good quality, healthy and non-infects.
- Farmers do it by simply scattering by hand, machines such as seed drills are also used for the same.
Adding manure or fertilizers:
- Plants, to grow needs nutrient. Some nutrients are grasped from the soil. The more is supplied by adding manures or fertilizers.
- Dead and decaying vegetable matter, waste from farms, household waste, excreta of animals form manure.
- The artificial fertilizers are made from ammonia, urea and phosphates. They are nutrient specific and gets easily absorbed by plants
Importance of adding manures:
- Water-holding capacity of soil increases.
- Soil becomes porous.
- The texture of soil improves.
- Number of microbes inside the soil also increases.
- The supply of water to crops at different intervals during production of crops are said to be irrigation.
- The time interval for irrigation of different types of crops varies with the crops to crops and season to season.
- There are traditional methods of irrigation as well as modern methods.
Pulley system (Moat)
Rahat – Dhekli
Protection from weed and pests:
- The unwanted plants which grow along with the plants and disturb the growth of plants are said to be weeds.
- These take all the nutrients from soil, which decreases the yield of the crop.
- The removal of weeds from the field is said to be weeding.
- Weeds are weeded out either by hand or with the help of an implement known as a harrow.
- In modern days to check growing of weeds, farmers use chemicals called weedicides.
- 2, 4 D are some examples of weedicides which has an important role in crop production and management.
- Pests are the insects which damage the crops by attacking them.
- Farmers use pesticides to control pests.
- Pesticides are the chemicals which kill eggs and larvae of pests. It has no effect on plants.
- After the crops get matured, the crops are cut down which is called harvesting.
- Farmers either pull the crops out of the ground or cut it close to the ground.
- A crop requires 3 -4 month of time to become mature.
- In India, farmers either harvests with a sickle or large farms are harvested by combine harvester.
- After harvesting, seeds are separated from chaff which is done by the process called threshing.
- Farmers who own small farms separate chaff from seeds by a process of winnowing.
- The harvested grain contains a good amount of humus and moisture.
- Farmers ensure the dryness of crops before storing into containers.
- Grains are stored to feed themselves and also to the time until all the grains are sold in the market.
- The dried grains are packed in gunny bags and properly kept in ventilated cemented halls, said to be as godowns.
- Dried grains are also kept in jute bags or metallic bins or mud bins.
- All these practices come in Crop production and management.
- Food is also obtained from animals for which animals are reared and this method is called animal husbandry.
- Either at homes or in farms the animals to be reared have to be provided with proper care, food and shelter
- Fish, milk, meat etc. comes in animal husbandry.