05 Apr, 2022
The Rabi season, the Kharif season, and the Zaid season are the three main seasons in farming. Rabi and Kharif are the two seasons that follow one another and contribute significantly to the agricultural sector.
However, in between Rabi and Kharif, there is another season known as the Zaid Season, and the crops grown during this season are known as Zaid Seasoned Crops.
Farmers prepare for the Zaid season, which runs from March to June after the rabi season ends and the Kharif season begins.
As previously stated, the period of the Zaid crop is shorter than the Zaid crops since it occurs between the main farming seasons of rabi and Kharif.
Major Zaid Crops cultivation areas.
Zaid crops are grown in different states of India depending upon the irrigation of that state.
Namely – Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Gujarat, and Tamil Nadu.
List the Crops Grown in Zaid season
Watermelon, muskmelon, cucumber, bitter gourd, fodder, pumpkin, cluster beans, strawberry, arhar, and Masur sugarcane.
Features Of Zaid Season Crops
· Zaid crops are summer crops that grow in areas where monsoons are not a factor. It is for this reason that they are grown on irrigated ground.
· Sugarcane is harvested after a year of cultivation as it is a short-term crop.
· Zaid crops provide a steady source of income for farmers and bridge the "gap" between the Rabi and Kharif seasons.
· For a successful harvest, Zaid crops require dry weather and access to irrigation. Planting for shorter-term crops begins in February and continues through April, allowing the soil to prepare for Kharif sowing in June once the monsoon arrives.
· During the primary growing stage, Zaid crops require dry, warm weather, and longer days during the flowering period. The months of March and June are the greatest for these crops since they are warm, dry, and have longer days.
· Zaid Season is a chief seasoned crop as seasonal fruits and vegetables are planted in March and April and harvested in June and July. They keep growers' wallets happy while also supplying nourishment to the plate of the ultimate consumer.
Why are Zaid or Summer Crops Important?
· Summer crops not only boost cropping intensity, thereby increasing land utilization, but they also give farmers additional cash.
· Apart from grains cultivated in the summer, which improve food security, pulses planted in the summer replenish the soil and increase farmer revenue.
· During the summer, several fodders are cultivated, providing nourishment for cattle. Fruits, vegetables, and oilseeds are grown during the summer season not only to improve nutrient security but are also cost-effective.
Requirements of the crop.
The growth or cultivation of the Zaid or summer crops has many requirements that need to be followed.
First and foremost, soil quality is the most significant factor in determining the crop's cultivation, harvest, and quality. Zaid season crops require well-drained sandy or loamy soil which is rich in organic matter and is considered ideal for the crop. The soil must be fertile
The soil pH should be around 6 to 7 it should not be alkaline soil with higher salt concentrations is not suitable for culivation.
2. Better Irrigational facilities
As Zaid crops are planted in the pre-monsoon season, when there is little prospect of rain, they require at least one irrigation to ensure proper plant establishment. In addition to short-duration vegetable crops, short-duration cultivars of summer rice, pulses, oilseeds, and small millets can be produced depending on irrigation facilities.
3. Proper Climatic Conditions.
Summer crops necessitate long days, dry weather, and plenty of sunshine. Germination is best when the temperature is between 23 and 25 degrees Celsius.
If the soil temperature is below 10°C, the seeds will not germinate. The ideal temperature for growth and fruit development is between 20 and 32 degrees Celsius. When the temperature rises over 45°C, resulting in sunburned fruits and shorter shelf life.
Groundnut thermal time requirements vary by cultivar and can range from 1800 to 2400 degree-days (at a base temperature of 10 degrees Celsius) or heat units.
How are Zaid or summer crops protected from animals during their cultivation?
Crop damage caused by roaming cattle is particularly severe in Zaid/summer crops, which are planted after Rabi crops have been harvested in most states. Aside from wandering cattle, wild creatures such as blue bulls, wild boars, monkeys, deer, elephants, and others are also responsible for destroying farmers' crops after Rabi season, when just a few fields are covered with crops.
To increase productivity cultivation of pulses and oilseeds should be encouraged during this season, and methods for preventing damage from cattle and wild animals must be developed.
The Indian Council of Agricultural Research's vertebrate pest management technologies, particularly for rats and birds, are very effective and should be popularized on a broader scale to safeguard crops from their threat.
The transmission of such technology to farmers is being carried out by the ICAR-All India Network Project on Vertebrate Pest Management.
However, such harm is not limited to a single farmer or town, necessitating a community-based approach to their control, for which State Governments must develop legislative laws.
Governments Initiative towards appreciating and boosting the importance of Zaid Season.
The government is playing a huge role in motivating and enhancing the growth of the Zaid crop as it has provided highly profitable advantages to the Indian Economy.
For the cultivation of summer crops, such as pulses, oilseeds, coarse grains, and cereals, the government has a variety of policies and strategies in place.
The government intends to welcome the extra income that comes with summer crops, as well as to create job opportunities for farmers who were previously underemployed or unemployed while waiting for the next season.
The current concentration on Zaid crops has worked brilliantly, as the area under cultivation during this time has been increasing steadily for the past few years.
In comparison to Kharif sowing, which covers 107 million hectares, Zaid planting, which primarily consists of pulses, covers less than 2% of the land. Pulses are planted on 12 million hectares in Kharif and 14 million hectares in Rabi, respectively.
As a result, growing summer crops is critical whenever possible.
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