Crop rotation is a popular technique that has been proven to help the environment, improve soil quality and favor future generations. It is characterised by different crops being alternatively grown on the same land in a specific order. The logic behind adopting this technique is that when the same crop is grown at the same place for years the soil gets depleted of certain nutrients. Crop rotation not just helps in optimising soil nutrients but also in combating pests and weeds attacks.
How does crop rotation help the environment?
Introduces new nutrients
Different crops need different nutrients to grow. If we continue to grow the same crop on the same field, it will keep pulling the same kind of nutrients from the soil. With the help of crop rotation, different nutrients are transferred to the soil every time. Therefore, we can count on this technique for keeping the soil rich in nutrients.
Reduces the need for fertilizers
The crop rotation method helps in lightening the load on fertilizers too. For example, the amount of nitrogen required for producing cotton crops can be reduced if peanuts were grown in those grounds before. By reducing the use of fertilizers, we can also lower greenhouse gas emissions.
Provides pest control
Pests can invade an agricultural field in no time. For example, if we keep feeding cotton to a disease that thrives on cotton, that pest will flourish and build up its presence in the soil. However, rotating that particular crop with another one can disrupt the cycle and control the pest population plaguing the field. It also reduces the use of pesticides.
Prevents soil erosion
Crop rotation brings balance to the soil and helps in battling against soil erosion. By rotating between crops with deep roots and shallow roots, soil quality can be improved. This would further help in enhancing water infiltration and preventing the nutrient-rich topsoil from washing away.
Crop rotation method is extremely effective when it comes to controlling weeds, pests, and diseases. It is also a proven method for raising crop productivity and maintaining soil fertility. In India, leguminous crops are grown alternatively with wheat, barley, and mustard. Here, the sequence of crop rotation could be, wheat in year 1, barley in year 2, mustard in year 3, again wheat in year 4, and so on.
An ideal crop rotation or cropping system results in efficient usage of natural resources, minimum environmental damages, stability, and higher productivity. As more crops are produced with this method, more of them are brought to the market yards or mandis. Aadathiyas present in those mandis receives the crops, clean them, and display them in the auction. The stock is then sold to its potential buyers.
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