How To Grow Rice Hydroponically?
Hydroponic rice paddy nursery: a novel approach to rice cultivation in India – Rice Today By expanding the use of hydroponic paddy nurseries, Indian rice producers may save substantial quantities of water, land, labor, and other resources. Paddy aged seven days in a hydroponics nursery.
- Image credit: Ayurvet Research Foundation) Rice (often known as dhan in South Asia) contributes significantly to India’s overall food grain output.
- It is cultivated on over 25% of India’s total cultivable land and is the staple food for over 60% of the country’s population.
- Despite being the second-largest producer of rice behind China, Indian rice farmers confront a multitude of difficulties.
Landholdings and land for rice cultivation are diminishing, irrigation water is becoming scarce, labor is becoming unavailable as young people prefer to seek employment outside the agriculture sector, excessive use of fertilizers and pesticides, emission of large quantities of greenhouse gases such as methane, climate change and unpredictable weather patterns, decreasing soil fertility due to unfavorable and topographical conditions, productivity loss, poor yields, and poor and water-stressed soils are all contributing to a decline in rice production.
In the foreseeable future, it will be exceedingly difficult to grow high-quality paddy under these conditions. Taking this into account, farmers must use innovative technology to overcome these obstacles. Farmers require technology that cut their cultivation costs, lessen their labor, increase their profits, and are sustainable.
Rice seedlings cultivated hydroponically being acclimatized prior to field planting. (Photo courtesy of Ayurvet Research Foundation) Success begins in infancy. It is impossible to exaggerate the significance of constructing a suitable paddy nursery in traditional rice production.
- The early phases of a rice crop have a significant effect on its performance and production.
- Using ill seedlings can diminish crop production by at least 10 percent.
- Timing the transplantation of seedlings is also critical for achieving maximum output.
- In South Asia, rice seeds are often cultivated in nurseries on flat seedbeds before to being transplanted into the flooded field.
Traditionally, Indian farmers utilize the wet-bed nursery mostly in places with abundant water. On a well puddled and leveled soil, pregerminated seeds are distributed. The use of organic manure and a modest amount of inorganic fertilizer as a base dressing improves the uprootability and vigor of seedlings.
The establishment of a suitable paddy nursery, the survival of transplants, the occurrence of illnesses, etc., pose challenges for Indian farmers. In addition, the standard mat-type nursery requires labor-intensive and complicated ground preparation. It also requires increased agrochemical input and consistent watering.
In addition, they noticed greater instances of contamination, leaf yellowing, and tip burning as a result of the open field nursery preparation. Hydroponics may be one answer to the several issues now confronting paddy farmers in India, such as harsh climate and dwindling land and water resources.
Photo: Ayurvet Research Foundation Hydroponic rice nursery technology: a potential remedy In the typical approach, 1 kilogram of nitrogen, 0.4 kg of phosphorus, and 0.5 kg of potassium are supplied per 100 square meters of nursery bed. Before planting, the nutrients are combined with the soil. After seeding, seedlings are ready for transplantation 21 to 30 days later.
Hydroponics is a method of growing plants without soil. The plants’ roots are instead cultivated in a nutrient solution or in an inert media such as perlite, vermiculite, and gravel. As a result of the availability of nutrients at the root zone, plants thrive swiftly and seedlings are ready for transplanting in seven days while using eight times less water than in a standard wet-bed nursery.
- One kilogram of paddy seed requires 3000-5000 liters of water in the typical system.
- Additionally, hydroponics offers advantages over conventional agriculture.
- Due to the regulated environment in which the plants are cultivated, the nursery is free of weeds and protected from insects.
- Therefore, costly and harmful insecticides and herbicides are unnecessary.
Even with limited water and land, the hydroponic paddy nursery is very productive due to the fact that the optimal conditions for temperature, light, water, and nutrition can be entirely regulated. The seedlings cultivated in a hydroponic paddy nursery establish themselves effectively in the field and are especially valuable during delayed monsoon rains.
Transporting hydroponically produced seedlings to the farmer’s land. (Photo courtesy of Ayurvet Research Foundation) The methodology for hydroponic paddy nursery The Ayurvet Pro Green Hydroponics Paddy Nursery cultivates rice seedlings in a controlled atmosphere and on multi-tiered shelves. At regular intervals, a specialized nutrient solution is administered to seedlings in order to satisfy their nutritional needs and promote the growth of robust roots.
At 30-33 0 C and 75-80% humidity, it only takes seven days for rice seedlings to reach 15 cm in height. Humidity and temperature play a significant part in the paddy nursery’s growth, and both may be modified to meet crop needs. Other benefits of hydroponic paddy nursery growing over conventional methods include: Hydroponically grown seedlings recuperate rapidly, generate robust tillers, develop consistently, and have a greater yield increase. Crops develop sooner, resulting in earlier harvesting and increased yields.95% fewer water use Appropriate for delayed monsoon conditions The land utilized for a nursery can be repurposed. Seven-day hydroponic paddy growth cycle. (Photo courtesy of Ayurvet Research Foundation) New technology influences farmers’ lands. In spite of the fact that many industrialized nations have previously adopted this technology, hydroponics is relatively new in India.
The Ayurvet Research Foundation is among the nation’s pioneers in the development of hydroponics technology for rice. The Indian Ministry of Agriculture provided the Ayurvet Pro Green Hydroponics machine’s commercial test report. The organization has secured a patent for the machine’s structure and method after ten years of technological development.
Since 2009, the Ayurvet Research Foundation has performed studies and field trials in over 2,500 paddy farmers across 50 villages in Orrisa, Western Uttar Pradesh, Sonipat, and Panipat, Haryana. Regular training and demonstration sessions were held in order to educate the farmers on the technology.
- A total of 81 hectares have been planted using hydroponic paddy nursery-grown rice seedlings to date.
- Farmers participating in an on-site demonstration for transplanting rice seedlings cultivated hydroponically.
- Photo: Ayurveda Research Institute) The Chandigarh Regional Office of the National Bank of Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has authorized the research foundation’s activity.
In 2016, NABARD financed a three-year initiative to create a hydroponically grown paddy nursery and automated transplanting on 85 hectares in Haryana’s Sonipat District. In seven days, rice seedlings were grown in trays using a hydroponic system as part of this experiment.
- On the eighth day, a mechanical transplanter was used to transplant seedlings into farmers’ fields.
- Rice paddy produced hydroponically is being transplanted using a mechanical transplanter.
- Photo: Ayurveda Research Institute) .
- The government may assist Indian rice producers in conserving considerable quantities of water, land, labor, time, and other resources by encouraging the widespread adoption of hydroponic paddy nursery.
Providing free training to farmers in various regions of the country would increase their knowledge of technology and its advantages, therefore empowering them. It will also teach them how to create new sources of revenue. Ms. Saxena and Mr. Upadhyay are researchers at the Ayurvet Research Foundation in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh.
Can rice be grown inside?
Starting Rice Indoors – If you do not reside in a warm climatic zone, you must start your rice plants indoors around six to eight weeks before to your last normal frost date, which is roughly the same time you would start tomato seedlings indoors. In USDA zones 10 to 12, if five months of frost-free days are expected, rice can be planted immediately.