Guidelines for Preparation of list of activities performed in cultivation

Article – 3  Jan 2015
Guidelines for Preparation of list of activities performed in cultivation
to ensure high and quality output.
In my previous article I have mentioned that if farm activities are performed with backing of work-base knowledge you are bound to achieve higher crop output with good quality. There is always a demand for such crop in the market. Thus you will be in position to earn good profit for crop. That is what is desired by each and every farmer.

You are definitely interested in knowing how one should proceed to split the work in small activities. Sugarcane sowing as example is already available in my previous Article. I am now going to explain how one should proceed stepwise :-
In work-base knowledge method work is taken as base , e.g  Pre-sowing preparation of land , preparation of land to facilitate sowing of crop , sowing etc. The activities list is to be prepared indicating each step along with precaution required to be exercised in the narration. During narration care is to be taken to include all aspects related to agriculture are included at the concerned step. Agricultural related subjects include , weather , land preparation, soil reaction, seeds, pests, crop quality, factors having adverse effect on crop production, chemical action taking place in plan :frowning:t etc. The advantage of this method is you are provided with all necessary information during performing particular step. You are not required to refer to written document such as book, magazine. You have to invest some money only  to gather necessary information , However you have to invest your knowledge , precaution , ability to stick to procedure laid down etc.

The steps involved in preparing list of actions and its sub-actions are given below for guidance.
Step 1 Prepare a list of all activities in sequence from initial land preparation to crop cutting and storing.  Then under each head list down the actions with sub-actions if any taken while executing the work under the particular head.
Step 2 Record the expense incurred and time taken for main-head activities during crop season. This information will provide you to check whether expense incurred  and or time taken is low , high or just required.
Step 3 The method to be followed to find out expense/time taken is just required or otherwise is given below :-
o   Select the activity where you are spending excessive money or time amongst all activities under the head. Imagine reduction or no expense situation and try to find out whether it will land you in low output and/or quality of the crop. In case the answer is spending excess amount  you are spending wasteful extra expenditure. In case answer is spending less amount it indicates that you may be eliminating essential activity which is responsible for Qualitative and/or quantitative output. In both the above cases you are at the loss.
o   Find out the pattern of spread of roots of crop being selected. Plowing to depth in excess of root depth can be classified as spending excess amount. Roots cannot be active beyond its depth. The plowing operation is expensive and charged on hour basis. Plowing at more depth takes extra time hence excessive cost.
o   If there is any alternative method of carrying out the same work with less expense, study this method for end product from qualitative and quantitative output angle. For study use your experience. In case of any doubt carry out small trial. Positive results obtained should be used for guidance of decision.
o   Any method appearing time/money saving must be assessed for adverse effects. e.g If you adopt burning of unwanted plant remains it will kill micro organisms present in the top soil. These organisms are responsible for converting nutrients in the form which can be absorbed by plant easily. Thus your action will reduce output considerably. This can be classified as spending less amount . Even though you have spent less money initially end result is low production hence less income or loss.
Step 4 There are some heads where use of machines definitely saves the time.The quality of work is also much better.  Use of hired machine is controlled by its owner. Operator is bound by his instructions. You can request operator to carry out work in beneficial fashion but you cannot guarantee the work is being done the way you wanted unless and until you are present during the execution of work. Purchasing machine is very costly. If possible you can try and purchase machine in group of more farmers.
Step 5 Any work which is against nature is bound to produce low to extremely low output.  List out all such works. e.g 1) Burning of plant leftovers.  2)  There are some crops giving low production if sown immediately after other specific crop. Prepare list of pairs of such crops. Avoid sowing subsequent  crops giving low output . 3) some crops give better yield if sown in the next season. Select such crops for more yield. Prepare list of such pairs also.

Step 6 You must have noticed that if you go for crop A after crop B , crop A gives considerably low output similarly it may give considerably high putput… Prepare the of each  such pairs of crops producing either low and high outputs. Avoid using combination with low output and say yes to combination with high output.
Step 7 For efficient use of land and other sources available farmer may think on the lines mentioned below –
Farm land – Divide the area available in such a fashion that you can grow  crops having 1) 3 to 4 months maturity  2) 6 to 8 months maturity 3) 12 to 18 months maturity and 4) long life such as fruit trees.
Benefits – Due to availability of crop at regular period you can earn money at intervals which can be used to meet periodical expense.  This will avoid delay in work due to non availability of funds. Crops such as Sugarcane returns are received after as late as 20 to 23 months. During this period it becomes difficult to arrange funds for number of woks. You may have to resort to Loan from some source. Distribution of land for crops as above , to great extent will solve your day-to-day expense problem.
Step 8 There is also another way to provide you with weekly finance. I have noticed that Farmers with 5 family member are spending as much as Rs 200 for purchase of vegetable in cash from weekly Bazar of the village. Taking this as base farmers are providing expense to the tune of 10 to 12,000 ( extra expense is due to festival and visit of family/friends) in cash weekly. If farmer allots say 2 guntha of farm for his vegetable needs and grows any number of varieties accepted by family. the weekly cash is saved and will be available for utilizing other urgent  farm works.
It is suggested that farmers must try and find out ways to ensure periodical i.e weekly., monthly , after three / six /one year period returns are received so that cash flow is maintained. Farmers main worry of funds as and when required basis can be solved. He may have to go for loan only in case of costly items. Repayment of loan that to on due date can be achieved  with little efforts but with due imagination.
Step 9 Farmers must get acquainted with modern technique followed in agriculture. There is a wide spread belief that the technique is costly. Definitely it is costly if you rely for each activity in farming on the technique. However there are number of other aspects which are very beneficial and cost very less. e.g The technique provides you with information related to
o Failure to follow natural rules will result in low crop output.
o It Points your attention to practice which will lead you to good and quality crop yield.
o It Points your attention to alternative low cost practice without compromising quality/quantity.
o Highlights avoidable actions having direct effect on low output. etc