Filed under: Crop Protection
Pulse crops can be grown throughout the year in Bangladesh. Mainly Lentil (Lens culinaris Medic), Chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.), Grass pea (Lathyrus sativus L.), Fababean (Vicia faba) are suitable for winter (Rabi) season and Blackgram (Vigna mungo (L)Heper ) and Mungbean (Vigna radiate (L) Wilczek) are suitable for summer (Kharif-I and Kharif-II) season. But the area covered by these crops is not satisfactory. There are several biotic and abiotic stresses which limit pulse cultivation. In general, the followings are the major constrains to pulses production in Bangladesh.
1. Pulse crops can not compete with cereals
Rice is the most important crop of Bangladesh. During the 1960-1970 rice were grown in the rain fed condition. During that time pulses were extensively grown all over the country on residual soil moisture. Introduction of irrigation facilities expand the rice cultivation all year round mainly on winter (Boro) season which cause abridge the pulses cultivation.
2. Low yield potential of local cultivars
Traditional farmer’s varieties or local varieties are inherently low yielding types, susceptible to disease and insect pest, less branching, low podding intensity, very small seed size. The average production rice is 4.0 t/ha, wheat 5.0 t/ha. Whereas production of Lentil 0.8 t/ha, mungbean 1.2 t/ha.
3. Susceptible to disease
All local pulses varieties are susceptible to the major diseases. Lentil is susceptible to Stmphylium blight (Stemphylium sarciniformis) can cause 80%, Collar rot (Sclerotium rolfsii) cause 44% yield loss. Chickpea is susceptible to Botrytis Grey Mold disease (Botryotis cineria), Mungbean and Blackgram are susceptible to Mosaic virus. These diseases can cause devastating to crop which hinders farmers from cultivation the pulse crops.
4. Susceptible to insect pests
There are many insects which cause severe damage to pulse crops. Aphid (Aphis craccivora Koch) is a serious pest of lentil, Pod borer (Helicoverpa armigera) make hole in the fruit o chickpea and eat the seeds. Thrips are (Order Thysanoptera) cause flower shedding in Mungbean.
5. Poor response to high inputs
The pulses varieties cultivated by farmers have little response to added fertilizer and irrigation. Pulse crops do not response to fertilizer as cereals do.
6. Late planting
Winter duration in Bangladesh is very short (100-110 days). Farmers do not sow lentil, Chickpea etc at optimum time. Therefore, these crops have even shorter period for vegetative growth resulting in poor yield. Farmers usually sow Mungbean after harvesting of Wheat, Potato, Lentil, Oilseed, vegetables etc. Late harvesting of these crops causes late sowing of Mungbean.
7. Less care
It is built in farmer’s mind that the pulse crop can be grown with less care. So they put more effort on major crops like rice, wheat, vegetable and give little effort on pulse cultivation.
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