Quality and productivity of rice as influenced by planting methods, nitrogen levels and irrigation scheduling in Northwest India

Field experiments were conducted at Ludhiana, India, during 2009 and 2010 to study the effects of water saving techniques on quality and productivity of rice. The experiment was laid out in split-plot design with three replications. The main plots involved 6 combinations of planting methods (fresh bed and puddled flat) and nitrogen levels (90, 120 and 150 kg N ha-1). Sub plots consisted of irrigation schedules [irrigation after 1 (I1), 2 (I2), 3 days (I3) after disappearance of water and at soil suction of 150+20 cm (I4)]. The results revealed that transplanting rice seedlings on freshly constructed beds saved 15.36 per cent irrigation water without any significant effect on quality and productivity of rice. Some of the quality parameters and rice productivity increased significantly only up to 120 kg N ha-1. Higher values of milling parameters, protein and amylose content were obtained in I3 which in most cases was statistically at par with I2 and I4. The maximum grain yield was obtained in puddled flat having I1 irrigation schedule, which was statistically at par with all other treatment combinations except with beds irrigated after 3 days of water disappearance. Thus, in order to save water and produce rice of acceptable quality and productivity it should be transplanted on slopes of fresh beds, supplied with 120 kg N ha-1 and irrigated at soil matric suction of 150+20 cm.

Author : SS Sandhu, SS Mahal and A Kaur