Cotton sowing has been reported over 4.56 lakh hectares, which last year was 16.57 lakh hectares. While the sowing window of cotton theoretically can be extended till July 15, yield is reported to be affected by late sowing.
Sowing has picked up across the state, bolstered by monsoon rains. But the delayed monsoon is expected to leave its mark in the overall sowing, which by June-end was 82 per cent less compared to the same period last year.
Sowing has lagged behind for most of June in the state because of the late arrival of the monsoon. Especially hit have been Marathwada, Nashik and Vidarbha with the first two already reeling under a severe drought. While rains picked up towards the third week of June, farmers proceeded slowly with sowing given the uncertainty of monsoon.
By the end of June, the state received around 71.8 per cent of the month’s normal rainfall of 223.3 mm. Barring Konkan, which received 90 per cent of the normal rainfall, all other regions in the state reported significant deficit in rainfall. The moisture stress has naturally taken a toll on sowing.
Data released by the department of agriculture shows that till June 30, 7.35 lakh hectares of farmland has come under sowing. Last year, on the same day, Maharashtra had reported sowing on over 39.88 lakh hectares. On an average, kharif sowing in Maharashtra is done over 149.73 lakh hectares with farmers taking crops of pulses, oilseeds, etc. Cotton is an important kharif crop and Maharashtra sees around 40 lakh hectares of area under the fibre crop. Farmers in western Maharashtra also undertake the sowing of sugarcane crop in June and July.
Oilseeds and pulses have reported the largest dip with the state reporting 92 per cent and 93 per cent dip in both the crops respectively. Tur, urad, moong and other pulses have reported more than 90 per cent dip. Similar is the case with oilseed soyabean (93 per cent dip) and sunflower (94 per cent dip). Barring moong and urad, farmers are expected to increase their acreage of all other crops as their sowing period extends till June 15.
Cotton sowing has been reported over 4.56 lakh hectares, which last year was 16.57 lakh hectares. While the sowing window of cotton theoretically can be extended till July 15, yield is reported to be affected by late sowing. Cane sowing has happened over just 481 hectares as against 4,331 hectares last year.
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