How To Produce Early Season Cucurbit? :: Low Tunnel Cucurbit Production

SUBJECTEarly Season Cucurbit. Low Tunnel Vegetable Production. Production of Cucurbit in Control Condition. High-Tech Cucurbit Production. Procedure of Production of Cucurbit Crop in Low Tunnel. Best Cladding Material for Low Tunnel Shades. Low Tunnel Vegetable Production in Temperate Zone. Types of Low Tunnel Vegetable Shades.

INDEX

S. No.Heading
1. Introduction
2.Early Season and Low Tunnel Cucurbit Production
3.Explanation
4.Frequently Asked Questions
5.Multiple Choice Questions

1. Introduction

Cucurbits include the following crops:

  • Cucumber.
  • Pumpkin.
  • Bottle gourd.
  • Bitter gourd
  • Snake gourd.
  • Water melon.
  • Musk melon.
  • Squash.
  • Fist gourd.

The cucurbit crops have very important place among horticulture-vegetable-crops. Cucurbits are mainly Zaid and Rabi season crop, hence the crops can be classified according to season.

A. Zaid Season Crop

Pumpkin, melon and squashes are grown mainly during summer season. Riverbed cultivation is predominant during summer. List of Zaid crop is as follows:

  • Water melon.
  • Musk melon.
  • Snake gourd.
  • Squash.

B. Kharif Season Crop

Bitter gourd is main crop in Kharif season. Open field cultivation is adopted during kharif season. List of Kharif season crops is as follows:

  • Cucumber.
  • Spine gourd.
  • Bottle gourd.
  • Ridge gourd.
  • Pumpkin.

Crop failure is rare with riverbed cultivation and with the other means of irrigation, hence average crop production per farmer is very high. So, high production at the same time and for the same nearby market is a cause of low farm income.

Production of early season crop is very essential to get excellent return for all hard-works done that ongoing season.

1.1. What is Early Season Crop Production?

Early season crop production is- ‘to get early yield from a particular species of plant-crop’.

We will take example of two farmers-

Example- Farmer A

  • Farmer A started cultivation of pea crop.
  • He sowed improved variety during 2nd fortnight of November.
  • It is a long duration variety.
  • He started selling after 100 days of crop sowing.

Example- Farmer B

  • Farmer B also started cultivation of pea crop.
  • He sowed early variety of pea e. g., Ariel during 2nd fortnight of October.
  • It is a short duration variety.
  • He started selling after 70-75 days of crop sowing.

Due to early production farmer B is getting very good market price. He has no or very less competition. It is the importance of early season crop harvesting.

1.2. What is Low Tunnel Crop Production?

A= roof. B= Entrance. C= Covered. D= Uncoverd. Height= 3 feet. Length= Adjustable.

Low tunnels are tunnel like structure made for the production of some horticulture vegetable crops. It is used to provide micro-climate to vegetable crops.

Crops grown under low tunnels may require advance irrigation system such as drip irrigation. Although, flood irrigation can be applied.

2. Early Season and Low Tunnel Cucurbit Production

2.1 How To Produce Early Season Cucurbit?

2.1.1 Required materials

2.1.1.1 Required Structure/Materials

Shadenet: Shadenet is basic structure for early germination and hardening of little plants. Different types of shadenets can be used to make low cost shade house i. e., plant house. Colour selection is very important. Mainly, two types of shadenets are used in plant house. First is White net which is used for vegetable cultivation, second is green shadenet which is used for germination and hardening of plants i. e., plant propagation. Green Shadenet should be used for the production of seedlings in early season vegetable cultivation.

Crop Seed: Crop seed can be purchased from any reliable shop (agriculture shop). Always check expiry date printed on seed package. Try to avoid online purchase. Buy F1 hybrid. Seeds from pure hybrid are unable to form new plants.

Plant Trays: Plant trays are used for sowing seeds. It can be purchased from any agriculture shop. Try to purchase a tray with more slots. Slot should be perforated.

Irrigation System: Plants are sown and hardened inside shade-house. Plants are transplanted after hardening. Also plants are sown in trays. So, permanent irrigation system such as drip irrigation is not essential. Flood irrigation at lower surface of plant trays or irrigation by water can is ideal.

2.1.2 Method/Procedure

Make shade house

  • Make low cost shade house using locally available materials like, use bamboo as pole.
  • Adjust the length and the width of shade house according to your need.
  • Distance between the pole should be kept 10 feet.
  • Cover the structure using green net.

Arrange Plant Trays

  • Arrange the plant trays inside shade house.
  • Trays can placed on soil surface or above the soil surface.
  • Fill the plant tray slots with manured soil.

Sowing and Irrigation

  • Perform seed sowing in plant trays.
  • Give light irrigation using water can.

Plant care and Transplanting

  • Look after for little plants.
  • Use micro-nuetrients.
  • Use plant-fertigation technique.
  • Start transplanting in main field 15 to 20 days.

Production starts 20 – 30 days earlier than other farmers.

2.2 Cucurbit Production in Low Tunnel

2.2.1 Required Materials and Method

Required materials/structure

Tunnel: Semi circular tunnels are basic structure in low tunnel cucurbit production. Different types of shadenets can be used to make low cost tunnels. Again, colour selection is very important. Mainly, one type of shadenet is used in low tunnels. White Shadenet should be used for the production of cucurbit under low tunnel. Height of the tunnel can be adjusted. It can be 1.5 feet or 3 feet or more according to varieties.

Irrigation System: Plants are sown and raised inside tunnel. The whole life cycle of crop is completed inside tunnels. So, the installation of permanent irrigation system such as drip irrigation is very important. Flood irrigation require much amount of water.

Crop seeds: As described earlier.

2.2.2 Method/Procedure

Plant Beds

Make plant beds before installation of drip irrigation system.

Drip Installation

Install drip system before making tunnels

Make Tunnels

  • Make low cost tunnels using locally available materials like, use bamboo
  • Adjust the length and the width of tunnels according to your need.
  • Distance between the bamboo sticks should be kept 5 feet.
  • Cover the structure using white net.

Transplant the seedlings after making tunnels.

*Flood irrigation is applied after seed sowing. Seed showing can be done before or after making tumne la.

3. Explanation

Cucurbits

Cucurbits are a group of cucubitaceae crops which include gourds, melons, squashes etc. The chemical present in cucurbits is cucurbitacin. It is cause of bitterness in some species.

F1 Hybrid

F1 hybrids are first generation varieties developed through crop hybridization programme.

Fertigation

Fertigation is a technique of application of fertilizer to plants mixed with irrigation water.

Kharif crop

Crop grown during rainy season.

Rabi crop

Crop grown during winter season.

Zaid crop

Group crops grown during summer season i. e., April – June are Zaid crops.

4. Frequently Asked Questions

Question. 1. Where to purchase shade net?

Ans.- Shadenet can be purchased online or from a agriculture shop.

Question. 2. What is the life-span of shadenet?

Ans.- Normally, it is 4-5 years.

Question. 3. What is high-tech vegetable production?

Ans.- High-tech vegetable production includes:

  • Green house.
  • Drip irrigation.
  • Mulching.
  • Installation of pad-fan system.
  • Fogger.

Question. 4. Is low tunnels useful in temperate zone?

Ans.- Yes, it is useful for all season.

5. Multiple Choice Questions

Question- #1. Low tumnels are used for….?

(a). Cucumber.

(b). Rice.

(c). Potato.

(d). All of the above.

See Answer (Code- 2)

Question- #2. Fertigation is a method of?

(a). Irrigation of water.

(b). Application of plant nutrients.

(c). Application of plant nutrient mixed with water.

(d). All of the above.

See Answer (Code-2)



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