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Samar Farmers Adapt Rice Ratooning

15 March 2012

PHILIPPINES - Samarnons may adapt rice ratooning to augment their dwindling harvest.

In Pinabacdao town where 756 hectares are devoted to rice farming, the rice ratooning technique will be done along with some other towns in Samar making the total area to be ratooned, 300 hectares, said Nelson Badolid, Municipal Agriculturist.

The idea was conceived in a meeting of agriculturists with Anita Taran, provincial agriculturist.

Ratooning, according to Badolid, is leaving rice stubbles in the field after harvest, applying a bag of fertilizer per hectare, and saturating the field with water. After some time, new grains will sprout and can be harvested after 45 days.

According to the agriculture journal, this is an inexpensive way to produce a second harvest of rice.

Mr Badolid recommended this as it is less affected by the climate and pests because the growing period is short.

“It enables farmers from having a second cropping because when the time comes, the field will then be cleared,” Mr Badolid offered.

Meanwhile, while Samarnons are rejoicing that it is harvest time, the agriculturists are grumbling because of the low productivity. Mr Badolid said that only 60 per cent of the rice grains are filled up because of the inclement weather.

He added that whereas before, farmers were able to harvest some 100-120 bags of rice per hectare, farmers now only get 40 bags due to the change in climate.

“Rains just pour unexpectedly, during the flowering stage, so that the grains end up half filled,” said Mr Badolid.

Pinabacdao Mayor Mario Quijano said he challenged the agriculture department to come up with a technology to cope with the worsening effects of climate change.

TheCropSite News Desk

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