Tilth and Tillage – Factors Influencing Preparatory or Tillage Operations
Factors Influencing Preparatory or Tillage Operations:
The preparatory cultivation of the lands done in various ways which is influenced by several factors but more important ones are:
1. The crop: The crop to be grown decides the type & preparatory tillage given to the land. Hardy crops like sorghum & other millets are not sensitive about tilth. Production of fine tilth will increase the cost of cultivation which is not economic. Small seeded or delicate crops like tobacco, chilli, coriander,sesamum, mustard etc. Require a fine seedbed for which land is repeatedly cultivated to get required fine tilth. Sugarcane & other root crops require deep cultivation of land to lose the soil to the required depth.
2. Type of soil: A clayey soil is amenable to cultivation only within a narrow range of moisture. Outside this range, the soil can’t be worked satisfactorily & increases the draft required. Too wet or to dry soils are difficult to cultivate. The lighter soils can be worked under a wide range of moisture & the draught required for their manipulation is much less. Loamy soils are easily brought to good tilt with little cultivation & expenditure of energy.
3. Climate: It in influences the moisture in the soil, the draught required for cultivation and depth & types of cultivation done, For example, in scarcity areas the rainfall is low & the moisture in the soil prior to sowing does not ordinarily permit deep cultivation which tends to dry up soil to a greater depth & reduce moisture available to the crops eventually (finally) Sowings cannot be done till depth of cultivated soil is properly moistened. This results in delayed sowing & consequently the effect on growth & yield of crop Deep cultivation is beneficial in regions having better rainfall, particularly temperate regions for promoting aeration, summer showers are received in South India which favors moist condition & ultimately beneficial for preparing the land for next season crops.
4. Type of farming: There are two types, irrigated & dry land/ rained farming. Under irrigated farming intensive farming is followed which includes cultivation of more than two crops. In a year continuously without much interval between them. During this narrow period of interval the land is to be cultivated repeatedly to bring required title without subjecting the soil for natural weathering for a long period. The frequency & extent of tillage operations increase the cost of cultivation which serious as the profitable crops is raised in an intensive manner. Dry land faming depends entirely on rains & in such areas only one crop is taken in a year. The interval between crops & successive cultivation operations is long. Weathering plays an important role than cultivation. Hence they are limited with wide intervals between them. The cost of cultivation is kept down & the low productivity of land does not warrant a higher investment.