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Sugarcane, among sweeteners, is the only cash crop occupying about 4.0 million hectares in the country. Of this, about fifty per cent is under ratoon. The planting of this crop is conventionally done through country plough or ridger requiring 30-35 laborers/ha for undertaking various planting operations. These include sett cutting, furrow opening, application of fertilizers in furrows, seed treatment, dropping of cane setts in furrows, application of insecticide, soil covering over the setts in furrows and planking. Non-availability of man power in sufficient number during these days of labor crisis and also planting being a time consuming process, it poses problems before sugarcane growers having 90-92 per cent of the plant area under spring and summer planting. Under these conditions, the germination of buds gets adversely affected due to loss of soil and sett moisture. Keeping this in view, the Indian Institute of Sugarcane Research, Lucknow designed and developed a cutter planter through which one can plant 1.50-2.0 hectares with the help of 4 laborers in a day, performing all the planting operations in a single pass. Since these planting operations are done simultaneously, there is no loss of soil and sett moisture resulting thereby 8-10 per cent higher germination. This implement is operated with 35.0 HP. Tractor.

To popularize this, training-cum-demonstration under Institution-Village Linkage Programme was organised at the Institute. Farmers although appreciated the implement showed apprehension about the yield claimed because of cane being planted comparatively at higher row to row distance (75.0 and 90.0 cm.) against usually followed spacing of 40 to 50 cm. Six demonstrations were conducted at farmers’ fields under IVLP Programme. To evaluate the performance of cutter planter, germination, yield and net profit were taken into consideration. A comparative statement regarding performance of sugarcane planting through country plough, ridger and cutter-cum planter on germination, yield and net return is given below.

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