Package of Practices (English Version)

Rice/Paddy Wheat Maize Temperate Fruits Vegetable Carrot Black Pepper Kiwi Fruit Strawberry

for the Cultivation of Maize

Recommended Varieties :
A. For Higher and Mid-Altitutes (800m ASL):

Local Varieties :

* Local White and
* Local Yellow

High Yielding Varieties (HYVs) :

* Vijay
* Kisan
* NLD White
* Naveen
* Ageti – 76

B. For Lower altitudes (below 800m) :

High Yielding Varieties (HYVs) :

* Vijay
* Kisan
* Diara
* Ganga Safed - 2
* Ganga - 101

Climate And Soil :
Maize does well on a wide range of climatic conditions, and it is grown in the tropical as well as temperate regions, from sea –levels upto altitudes of 2500 m . It is however susceptible to frost at all stages of its growth. The ideal soils for its cultivation are the loams and sandy loams which should be fertile, deep and well-drained.

Sowing Time :

* For higher altitudes : mid-March to mid-April.
* For lower regions : April to May.
* Rabi (winter) crop : October to November.

Seed Rate and Seed Treatment :

Seed Rate - 15-20 kgs per hectare
Seed Treatment - Seed Treatment with Thiram or Captan @ 4 gms./Kg Maize seeds is advocated before sowing, if seeds are procured from a unreliable source kept from the last crop.

Land Preparation : Maize requires a firm and compact bed, free from stubbles and weeds. One deep ploughing should be given, followed by two or three harrowings, to bring the soil to a fine tilt.

Manures and Fertilizers (Recommended):
Manures : 10-15 tonnes of farmyard manure, cowdung or compost is required per hectare, which should be incorporated into the soil at ploughing time.
Fertilizers : (N:P:K :: 80:60:40)

High Yielding Varieties (Kg/Ha) Local Varieties (Kg/Ha)
Urea 175 130
SSP 375 250
MMP 50 50

Soils however should be tested regularly as the recommendation will differ from region to region, and will also depend on other factors related to previous crop grown, soil management, pH, etc.

One third the quantity of Urea and the whole quantity of SSP and MOP should be applied at sowing time or just before sowing. The remaining quantity of urea should be applied as top-dressing, in two equal, split doses, 30-45 days (knee height stage) and 60-75 days (tassel initiation stage), after sowing.

Sowing : Furrows are made in the beds at a distance of 70 cms and depth of 7.5-10 cms. The manures and basal dose of fertilizers are applied in the furrows and mixed well with the soil. Seeds are then sown in these furrows in lines, at a distance of 20 cms (8 inches) and covered over with soil.

Irrigation : The Kharif crop requires irrigation only when there is an extended period of water stress. However, the Rabi crop needs frequent irrigation at intervals of 15-20 days.

Innerculture : Weeding is necessary as weeds interfere with the plant growth, particularly during the initial stages. 2-3 weedings may be required. Plants should be also be earthed up after every weeding for a better crop stand. Interculture operations should not be continued after flowering.

Plant Protection : A. Diseases :

Leaf Blight - Manifestation of oval to round, yellowish-purple spots on leaves. The affected leaves dry up and appear as if burnt. In severe cases, the plants may become stunned, resulting in poorly-formed ears.

Control : The crop can be sprayed with Diathane - M-45 or Indofil @ 35-40 gms or Blue Copper @ 55-60 gms in 18 litres water, 2-3 sprays at 15 days interval, will effectively control the disease.

A. Insect Pests :

i) Stem Borer - These borers feed on leaves in the earlier stages. Later on they bore into the stem and cobs, rendering the plant unproductive.

Control :

* After harvest, the stalks and stubbles should be collected from the field and burnt.
* Crop can be sprayed twice with Thiodan 35 EC @27 ml in 18 litres water, once 20-25 days after germination and the second spray at the time of grain formation (in endemic areas).

ii) Red Hairy Caterpillars - Caterpillars feed and destroy the whole plant if the attack is in the early stages of growth.

Control :

* Egg masses and young caterpillars should be collected as soon as detected, and destroyed.
* The field should be ploughed out after the crop is harvested, so as to expose pupae.
* Thiodan 35 EC @ 27 ml in 18 litres water should be sprayed only as last resort.

iii) Aphids - Tiny, soft-bodied insects, usually green in colour. Nymphs and adults suck the sap from leaves and young shoots.

Control : The crops can be sprayed with Rogor 30 EC @ 18 ml in 18 litres water.

iv) Grasshoppers - Short-winged hoppers, laying eggs in the soil at a depth of 7.5 to 20 cms, adults feed on foliage.

Control : Thiodan 35 EC @ 25 ml or Ekalux 25 EC @ 28 ml in 18 litres water can be sprayed.

v) Termites - These pests attack young seedlings as well as mature plants, attack is also visible on roots and lower parts of the plants.

Control : Thiodan 4% Dust @ 12 15 kg per hectare is applied and mixed well with the soil.

Harvesting :
Cobs which are to be utilised as grain should be harvested when the grains are almost dry or containing roughly 20% moisture. The appearance in the grains of composite and high yielding varieties however may be misleading as grains become dry while the stalk and leaves are still green. The cobs are removed from the standing crop and sun dried before shelling, otherwise retained in their jackets., if kept for seed or to be consumed or utilised at a later stage.

Harvesting :

* Local Varieties - 15 to 20 quintals (grain) per hectare.
* High Yielding Varieties - 40 to 50 quintals (grain) per hectare.

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