Farmer's fertilizer practices in the semi-arid tropics of India uri icon


  • This paper describes the fertilizer and farm yard manure practices in the farmers' fields in seven villages located in five contrasting agroclimatic zones of India's Semi-Arid Tropics (SAT) over a periodof three cropping years (1982/83 to 1984/85). The results indicate that in these rainfed areas of India's SAT a large proportion of cropped land still does not receive any nutrients either from farmyard manure and/or fertilizer. The fertilizer use is mostly confined to irrigated land. Despite heavyinvestment for irrigation all the irrigated land do not receive fertilizer. Application of farmyard manure (FYM) is common in dry land and is mostly used as a soil-improvement strategy rather than nutrient enhancing strategy. FYM is more a complement than substitute to fertilizer and has residualeffect for 2 to 3 seasons. Most of the fertilizer is applied to high value cash crops planted as improved cultivars. There are sharp differences in the use of fertilizer across villages. In general rabi (postrainy season) crops are starved of nutrients application especially in those regions wherepostrainy season cropping on residual soil moisture is prevalent. In these regions adoption of improved cultivars and access to irrigation is limited. Due to poor response of fertilizer on crop yields also, use of fertilizers is quite low in these areas

publication date

  • 1991