Preparation of list of activities and sub-activities – Crop production Article 4

Article 4 – Feb 2015

Preparation of list of activities and sub – activities – Crop production

Preparation of list  of work under head and sub – head.  List for each head is to be prepared separately.
The steps involved are –
Step 1 Try to remember the actions taken in the sequence they are performed. List  each and every action taken. Do not miss any action however insignificant it may sound and as such thinking that it is not required to be included  in the list.
Step 2 Witness the work while performing. Check list prepared by you with the sequence of the work  as it is being performed. Change the sequence , add action , delete action  if required. `Inclusion of each and every single action is essential as the actions provide you with the cause for low quantity and quality or any hazard. If any action is not included in the list you may miss the opportunity to correct your mistake , probably the action omitted  may give clue to the mistake.( Example of work appearing insignificant -  While cutting any tree axe is used.  Actual cutting starts with lifting axe and then applying force.  It is possible that majority will think lifting axe is insignificant step. However one must understand that the action has ingredients like height to which axe is lifted. This height will decide the strength of blow and the time taken for work to complete. Similarly it is also essential to hold the axe in such way that it will not cause any injury to user as well as persons working / standing near by. Loose hold may result in injury to self or persons in near by area. The result is unnecessary  time is taken or wasted. Time is also important in our work.)
Step3 List when prepared in the sequence in which the work is performed helps farmer  in management of many  of the farm activities.  Study the list from management angle.  Management  of time is one amongst  many.
Step 4 Do not prepare list in casual manner.  Divide each action taken in small part .  I have listed actions in my earlier Article in respect of “sugarcane sowing  for your guidance. However I am reproducing the same for ready reference.
o Selection of sugarcane , Generally from some nearby farm.
o Cutting required quantity of sugarcane . ( Refer step 2 above also in  other steps below)
o Loading cut sugarcane in vehicle for transportation to sowing sight.
o Transportation of sugarcane to sowing sight.
o Unloading of cut sugarcane.
o Storing unloaded sugarcane till sett are prepared for sowing.
o Cutting of sugarcane in setts.
o Transportation of setts for first stage of sowing.
o Spreading setts on ridge.( Varamba in Marathi)( Note this method is followed by majority of farmers.)
o Laying setts in trough ( SARI in Marathi)
o Pressing setts in irrigated field.
Step 5 Consider each action separately.  Find out using your experience, also gather information from your friends / Agricultural Graduates / experienced farmers for possible adverse effect  due to these  action.  List  all  reasons collected.  Now  consider each  reason  again  to  find out whether  actually  benefits or adverse effect  will result.  Eliminate redundant entries.  Note type of benefit or adverse effect  against  that particular action.
Step 6 Number of farmers have gone through the experience mentioned below –
While working in the field particular action when performed he is benefitted in the long run by  handsome crop output.  Try to elaborate the details of action and  details of benefit accrued.
Farmer  might have come across loss in the end by performing some action. In this case also note down the details of loss and action performed.
Farmer  may have encountered  lot of problem  while performing  some action. The problem may have resulted in extra expense or  extra time taken to complete that work. In this case also note the details as mentioned above. ( The distance between rows and crop sapling may be such that it is not possible to work in the area with comfort)
Step 7 This step is related to work to be performed periodically.  The time table is required to be prepared  that will include periods as mentioned below –
On dates “on as required basis”.  Farmers are aware of growth cycle of each crop. e.g Groundnut. There are four main stages – Emergence of root / leaves , Growth , Bud and flower and formation of groundnut. 
Sub- events in each stage are also required to be listed. e.g – Growth – development of root structure i.e spread of roots vertically downwards as well in horizontal direction. Period of elongation , increase in thickness , white and brown stage of root is taking place. The role of roots in stage and sub stage is fixed. The growth takes specific period from germination. The requirement of fertilizers is different during development. It is very essential to correlate the development and fertilizer uptake for each crop. The list to be prepared may have following heads  Date , Number of days from sowing , Developmental stage,  Fertilizer required ,  quantum of fertilizer ,  Date on which fertilizer applied. ( Note last column is essential as it will definitely indicate its effect on final output.)
Explanation for preparing above details -  Farmers know that during the growth period specific  portions of the plant undergoes in  certain fashion.  Let us find out the growth pattern. After germination growth above the soil i.e shoot , leaves and below the ground i.e root in vertical and horizontal fashion are under growth.  Role of fertilizer is requires special  attention during each subsequent growth period. Use of that specific fertilizer will help good yield.  The role of each nutrient is required to be known in relation to plant growth. Farmers will be benefitted if village agriculture  graduate help them in preparing this list. Farmers are aware that liquid fertilizer dose requirement is calculated based on exact need during development stage of crop. This will benefit farmers while selecting fertilizer.  Out of NPK the requirement of N is as good as zero during last maturity phase. The study of this schedule of liquid fertilizer dose  will give guidance in this respect.
Micro-nutrients are also essential in all the stages of development. These micro-nutrients can be supplied in liquid form or through compost fertilizers  or in complex fertilizers… . Note that the micro-organisms are also essential to convert applied fertilizers in the form which is easily digested by plants. Organic fertilizer application is a food of micro organisms hence it is essential to use it for good yield/quality of crop.
Farmers must cultivate the habit of asking question to any work they are performing. The questions are 1) Why I should perform this activity. 2) What benefits to crop will be available. 4) How it will help plant to provide yield increase in quantum and quality of end product. 5) If I fail to perform the activity how it will contribute to low putput. 6) Are there there any side effects if the activity is performed is usual and if there are side effects what the nature of damage / loss.  Changes required in activity to minimize adverse effects.  I have enumerated answers to some of the activities i.e use of fertilizer above. Farmers should imagine the answer based on his experience and /  or discuss with experts to obtain the same.
Cultivate habit to collect information why actions have to be performed in laid fashion only.

To be continued in Article 5…