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Rice zones In Pakistan, rice is grown under diverse climatic and edaphic conditions.

Basmati predominates in traditional rice tracts of Punjab (Zone II). In Swat (Zone I) at high altitude mountain valleys, cold tolerant rices are grown. In the south of NWFP, Sindh and Balochistan (Zone III and IV), IRRI type medium long grain heat tolerant tropical rices are grown (Figure 2).

Area, production and yield of rice Rice productivity in Pakistan is low than many other rice growing countries of the world. Rice production and yield in Pakistan were increasing consistently and highest production (5.2 million tones) and yield was obtained during the year 1999. Due to acute shortage of water and prolonged drought conditions, rice production reduced to 3.8 million tones during 2001 (Figure 3). Later on, the production trend has increased up to 5.6 million tones since 2005. This was achieved due to combined efforts of rice research and development, favourable environmental conditions, high prices of paddy and good economic return to farmers (Figure 4). Historical Rice Research Developments Rice is one of the oldest cultivated crops in Pakistan. Historically, the research on rice in Pakistan was initiated in 1912 with the establishment of Agri. Research Station at Larkana, Sindh. However, rice varietal improvement was started in 1920. In 1938, Rice Research Station was established at Dokri, Sindh and then station was upgraded to institute in 1970. In Punjab, rice research was initiated in 1926 with the establishment of Rice Research Station, Kala Shah Kaku. The station was upgraded into a mono-crop, multidisciplinary institute with a wider mandate in 1970. In NWFP, rice varietal improvement work was started at Agri. Research Institute, Tarnab, Peshawar in 1962. In 1964, rice research was shifted to Mansehra and D. I. Khan and then from Mansehra to Mingora Swat in 1975. Keeping in view the production problems of rice growers in diverse climatic zones, several rice research facilities were opened in other areas. A National Coordinated Research Programme (NCRP) on rice was initiated in 1975. Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) acts as coordinating agency and integrates the research activities with a full time National Coordinator. The overall objective was to strengthen and coordinate rice related research and development activities in the country. Since 1975 NCRP on rice has been playing a vital role in rice improvement with the collaboration of its units. Coordinated Rice Programme has established viable linkages at national and international level especially with IRRI and RWC (Figure 5). Major activities of the NCRP are: Germplasm acquisition and distribution Organize National Uniform Yield Trials Arrange travelling seminars and annual meetings Strengthening public-private


Besides coordination, monitoring and evaluation of research and development activities, PARC conducts research on those aspects which are not being taken by other institutions. Research and development infrastructure in Pakistan has the potential to cater the needs of rice growers, rice industry and foreign market.

Figure 5: Cooperating units of rice programme In addition to aforementioned cooperating units, Rice Programme is working in close collaboration with various institutes/programmes at NARC, Islamabad. Rice Programme has also established viable public-private partnership to boost rice research and development activities mainly with the development and commercialization of rice hybrids. Rice Research Institute (RRI), Kala Shah Kaku is mainly responsible for research and development of Basmati rice in the Punjab province and RRI, Dokri on IRRI rice in Sindh and Balochistan. Nuclear Institute for Agriculture and Biology (NIAB), Faisalabad and NIA, Tandojam are working on the development of rice varieties through mutation breeding. Soil Salinity Research Institute (SSRI), Pindi Bhattian is working on reclamation of saline soils, develop salt tolerant rice varieties and develop technologies to grow rice under saline conditions. The Centre of Excellence of Molecular Biology (CEMB), Lahore is making efforts to incorporate resistant genes against major insect pests of rice through innovative techniques. Agricultural Research Institute (ARI), D.I. Khan mainly emphasize on the management of stem borers. However, Agricultural Research Institute (North) Mingora, Swat is working on the development and cultivation of cold tolerant rice varieties. Government Seed Farm, Usta Muhammad (Balochistan) and Directorate of Agriculture, Muzaffarabad, AJK are the varietal testing sites only. Public-private partnership

PARC/NARC has run a tripartite project in collaboration with EMKAY Corporation, Lahore and China from 2001 to 2006. The objectives of the project were to develop rice hybrids in Pakistan specially for Sindh, Balochistan and Southern Punjab; on job training of Pakistani scientists and establishment of hybrid seed production and marketing infrastructure in private sector. The research work was carried out for the last five years at EMKAY Farm, Farooqabad. Some promising hybrids have been developed. At the moment seed of 17 hybrids has been produced by EMKAY. Seven hybrids developed by EMKAY Corporation have been included in the country wide adaptability trials.

Hybrid rice PARC/NARC has been conducting adaptability trials on rice hybrids in collaboration with Federal Seed Certification and Registration Department since 2005. So far, 80 rice hybrids supplied by different national and multinational seed companies have been tested for adaptability in National Uniform Yield Trial (NUYT). These trials were planted at various locations through out the country. The crop stand of few hybrids was excellent and out yielded the commercial variety, IR-6. Seven rice hybrids have already been recommended by Variety Evaluation Committee (VEC) for further approval of National and Provincial Seed Councils for general cultivation. In addition, certain resource conservation technologies (RCTs) are being refined and disseminated through viable publicprivate partnership. In future, such collaborative activities will continue to strengthen the public-private partnership.

What role PARC is playing for rice productivity enhancement in Pakistan? Ans. PARC performs multifarious functions for enhancing rice productivity in the country. Important functions include acquisition and distribution of exotic rice germplasm; organize National Uniform Yield Trials, annual research planning meetings and traveling seminars; strengthen research capabilities of provincial research institutes by providing funds, trainings and research staff. PARC conducts research on those aspects, which are not being undertaken by other cooperating units. From the exotic material through selection more than 10 rice varieties have been approved for general cultivation. Through NUYT about two dozen rice varieties have been commercialized. PARC scientists have developed a number of resource conservation technologies such as pesticides saving and environment friendly rice IPM, cost-effective method of zinc application and need-based use of nitrogen fertilizer through LCC. How to increase Basmati rice yield without sacrificing quality? Ans. Basmati rice yield can be increased substantially through a comprehensive approach comprising development of high yielding, better quality, resistant to insect pests/diseases and tolerant to abiotic stresses rice varieties; use of pure, high quality and healthy seed, timely sowing, optimum plant population, balanced use of fertilizers, proper water management, timely control of insect pests, diseases and weeds through integrated approach, mechanized harvest and post-harvest operations. Public private partnership can ply an important role to increase Basmati yield in Pakistan. How can we meet national paddy seed requirements? Ans. Viable public-private partnership is required to meet national paddy seed demand. Such partnership is more urgently needed in case of hybrid rice. Public sector research institutes/ programmes are needed to be strengthened by providing more core budget to enhance research and development capacity activities. What are the sources of seed availability? Ans. Rice Research Institute, Kala Shah Kaku, Lahore and Dokri; Seed Corporation; Private seed companies and farmer to farmer exchange. Which are the major rice varieties recommended for cultivation in Pakistan? Ans. Variety Area

Basmati 385, Super Basmati, Basmati 2000, Shaheen Basmati, Punjab Kernal Basmati, NIAB IR-9 and KS 282. IR 6, Khushboo 95, DR82, DR 83, DR 92, Shua 92, Sarshar and Sindh and Balochistan Shahkar.

JP-5, Swat-I, Swat-II and Fakhr-e-Malakand.

Mountainous areas of NWFP.

What are the major diseases of rice and what measures are taken to control them? Ans. Bakanae/foot rot, bacterial leaf blight, paddy blast, brown leaf spot and stem rot are major diseases of rice in Pakistan. These diseases can be controlled through integrated weeds management (IWM) approachesuse of healthy seed, seed treatment, proper water management, clean cultivation, cultivation of resistant varieties etc. What are the major insect pests of rice and how these can be controlled? Ans. Rice crop in Pakistan is attacked by more than seventy species of insect pests. Most important insect pests are stem borers, white-backed plant-hopper and leaffolder. These pests can be managed through integrated approach including sowing insect resistant rice varieties, sowing rice crop at recommended time, proper water management, balanced use of fertilizers, conservation and augmentation of bio-control agents and judicious and need based use of insecticides. Which are the recommended fertilizers and their dose per acre? Ans. Fertilizers: Urea, DAP, SSP,MOP/SOP Doses per acre Basmati type IRRI Type Nitrogen (Kg/ha) 55 70 Phosphorous (Kg/ha) 30 40 Potash (Kg/ha) 25 25

What are the recommendations for farmers to improve rice production/productivity? Ans. Use pure and healthy seed In time planting Appropriate plant population (80,000-100,000 per acre) Proper fertilizer application (as mentioned above) Proper crop protection measures (IPM- timely sowing, resistant varieties, water management, balanced fertilizer use, need based use of pesticides, conservation of natural enemies, removal of stubbles and infested plants etc) Timely harvesting

ISLAMABAD (APP) - Pakistan Agriculture Research Council (PARC) has introduced a new technology called Aerobic Rice Production Technology, aiming at conserve water and enhance paddy yield. Chairman PARC Dr.Zafar Altaf told APP that under the technology the paddy crops do not need standing water necessary for the crop but cultivated like wheat and maize crops. He claimed that by using the technology the farmers in the country can enhance their production from existing 26 Maund to 73 Maund which is more than double of the yield. Through this method we can conserve 30 percent of water in the rice cultivating areas, he remarked. Initially, he said that PARC has selected one district in Sindh (Sangar and Sakrand) and one in Punjab (Bahawalpur, Rahimyar Khan and Multan). He said that in Pakistan, rice is, traditionally, grown as manual transplanting of 30-days old rice seedlings in the well flooded and puddled fields. Rice nursery is raised separately on fine-prepared and manured soil. He added that the nursery seedlings at the age of 30-35 days are, then, uprooted manually and shifted to the flooded and puddle field. Puddling, he said land preparation in flooding destroys soil structure and after paddy crop harvest, the soil condition is not conducive for fine land preparation and good stand establishment of following Rabi crops. He added that farmers keep standing of water continuously up to the maturity of rice crop. Moreover, manual and random transplanting of rice seedlings does ensure optimum plant population. About 50,000-60,000 plants are found in the manual transplanted crop against the recommended plant population of 80,000 to 100,000 per acre. In this respect, he said that the conventional method of rice cultivation is labour and water-intensive and involves high cost of energy, with the result of low paddy yield. Hence, he observed the present rice cultivation system is not very productive, resource-efficient and sustainable, and poses serious threats to the sustainability of rice-based cropping system. Alternatively, he said aerobic rice (a special rice that is grown like wheat or maize crops) addresses to such issues and saves water, labour, time and improves stand establishment of the following crops. Dr.Zafar Altaf said that the Rice seeds are drilled or broadcast in fine seedbed and then irrigations are applied whenever it is required.

Dr.Altaf said that the Aerobic rice does not need growing of nursery, its transportation and transplanting, and puddling operation.

Water use efficiency and economic feasibility of growing rice and wheat with sprinkler irrigation in the Indus Basin of Pakistan

With a population of more than 150 million, Pakistan cannot meet its need for food, if adequate water is not available for crop production. Per capita water availability has decreased from 5600 m3 in 1947 to 1000 m3in 2004. Water table has gone down by more than 7 m in most parts of the country. Present need is to identify and adopt measures, that will reduce water use and increase crop production. This study was conducted in farmers fields during 20022004 to evaluate the water use efficiency and economic viability of sprinkler irrigation system for growing rice and wheat crops. Yields and water use were also measured on adjacent fields irrigated by basin flooding, which were planted with the same crop varieties. Sprinkler irrigation of rice produced 18% more yield, while reducing consumption of water to 35% of that used in the traditional irrigation system. Sprinkler irrigation of wheat resulted in a water use efficiency of 5.21 kg of grain per cubic meter of water used compared to 1.38 kg/m3 in the adjacent flooded basins. Benefitcost analysis showed that adoption of rain-gun sprinkler irrigation for rice and wheat is a financially viable option for farmers. While these findings show large potentials for improving water use efficiency in crop production they also indicate that a large portion of the water applied in traditional flooded basin irrigation is going to groundwater recharge, which has high value near large cities which draw their water from the aquifer.

Information sheet: Irrigation systems of rice farms An irrigation system supplies water to farms through artificial supply channels or canals. A rice farm also has supply channels which provide water to crops and pastures. Crops may be grown in several types of irrigation layouts which may all be used on the one farm. The three main layouts used on a rice farm are: 1. Natural contour or landformed contour irrigation systems Contour systems are the main irrigation layouts used in the rice growing areas of eastern Australia. Banks are built along the natural contours. In natural condition the soil surface between the banks may be uneven which causes uneven water depth and the irregular shape of the bays causes inefficiency with machinery operations. Hence most rice farms have upgraded layouts using laser levelling to create a uniform grade and soil surface with parallel contour banks and regular sized bays. The machine that makes the level irrigation system is called a laser level and the process is called land forming. The contour irrigation system used for rice production enables rice bays to be flooded and the water held at specific depths. The water depths are different depending on the stage of the rice crop. The rice farmer needs to be able to quickly raise and lower the water depth. As the rice grows, the farmer must make sure that the depth of water is sufficient to inhibit weed growth; to protect against cold temperature damage; and to maintain enough water to replace evaporation during the hot summer months. This layout is the most popular with rice farms in Australia, especially those with crop rotations of rice, wheat and pastures. 2. Border check systems The border check system is mainly used on steeper land not naturally suited for rice farming. With this system, banks are built down the slope to ensure adequate drainage for a range of crops and pastures. If rice is grown, the banks need to be removed and erected at intervals across the slope as for the contour layouts. Because of the changeover in banks border check systems usually have longer rice rotations. It is usually two to three years of rice followed by a 4- 8 year crop and pasture phase. 3. Furrow systems Furrow systems are raised irrigation beds that are built down the slope or on flat slopes with banks on terraces. Raised beds may vary from 1-2 metres wide. They are widely used for summer crops of maize and soybeans and winter crops in the Murrumbidgee valley. Research has demonstrated rice can be grown in bed layouts but so far only a few growers are growing rice in bed layouts since yields and water use efficiency are no better than for the other layouts. The advantage of rice in beds is for the following double winter crop because of the good drainage gained from the furrows.

Rice belongs to the genus "Oxygen",two species of which are cultavated,"Oryza Glaberrima" and "Oryza Sativa".The former is found only in tropical west African while the latter is found all over the rice growing areas..The exact origin of rice is not known but most of the research workers give this credit to South East Asi.After 1468 it was introduced in Italy from where it spread to european and many other contries of the world. Favourable Coditions For Its growth: 1. Temperature: Rice is a tropical plant.it requires high temperature during the growing season of 4 to 6 months.The temperature should be more than 80 degree F and in no way less than 70 degree F even for the quick maturing varieties.In Pakistan rice is cutivated only one a year i.e.early summer.Its cultivation is not possible in areas of severe cold or where the temperature goes below freezing point. 2. Water Rice is known as a plant of water.Its cultivation requires large amount of moisture.The annual rainfall should not be in any way leas than 40 ".The root of the rice plant should remain submerged in water for a long time.For 75 days the rice fields should have 6 " of slow moving water.When the rice crops mature ,less water is required and during ripening season,the field should be almost dry so that it can be harvested easily. The rice growing areas of Pakistan have an average annual rainfall of less than 20 " .So the deficiency of rainfall has been met by the artificial arrangements of irrigation water through canals and tube wells etc. 3. Soil: With the exemption of sandy soils which are very permeable ,rice can be grown successfully on soils ranging from silt loam to clays .Alluvial soil is the most suitable soil for the rich growth of rice.Heavy clayey sub soil with water retaining capacity gives best results. 4. Land: The flooding of rice fields requires level land and therefore river valleys,deltas and coasted plains are suitable areas,otherwise terracing is required.

System of Cultivation There are two methods of rice cultivation: 1.Broad Cast Sowing: This involves direct plantation of rice plants in the fields. 2.Transplantation:

In this case sowing is first done in nursery beds.When the plants attain a height of 4 " to 6 ",they are transplanted into big fields.This method is also called the Japanese method.It is the most scientific and beneficial method.By its practice ,the per acre production increases considerably. Rice is mostly cultivated in rows and the distance from row to row is kept about 6 " and from plant to plant remains 3 ". Rice Growing Areas Cultivation of rice is mainly confined to the low lying parts of the Punjab plain and the flooded rivers and canal areas of Sindh.To a small extent it is also grown in the submountain districts in the North and the canal irrigated areas.Rice cultivation in N.W.F.P .Baluchistan and Azad Kashmir areas is not more than 1 % to 2 % of their total areas. 1. Punjab: In Punjab,the division of Lahore and Gujranwala rank at the top.Best equalities like Basmati,Parmal,Sukhdari,Irri-six etc. are grown in this part of Punjab.Besides somu rice is also cultivated in Shakhupura,Sargodha,Faisalabad,Multan and Bahawalpur divisions. 2. Sindh: In the province of Sindh,the districts of Sukkur division are most famouse for good quality rice cultivation .Larkana district ranks at cultivated in Khairpur,Nawabshah and Hyderabad districts.The main qualities of rice which are common in the province of Sindh are Kangni,Beghi,Irri-8 etc.