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«Abstracts submitted for the World Rice Research Conference, Tokyo-Tsukuba, Japan, November 4-7, 2004 A. Papers proposed for a panel with a focus on ...»

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A.Satyanarayana,2 R. S. N. Rao,3 T. Ramamohana Rao,4 and P. Rambabu5 Farmers' participatory extension as a means for transfer of technology has helped significantly in the adoption of the System of Rice Intensification (SRI), a low-input rice production technology, among farmers of West Godavari district of India. Initially, a few progressive farmers were motivated to lay out demonstration plots after seeing video material on SRI and learning about the technology and its scientific basis. Newspaper articles and TV programmes further spread knowledge about the technology. SRI demonstration plots were supervised, 300 in the first season (2003 kharif).

The new technology attracted neighbouring farmers, other farmers in the village and in other villages also. Media coverage on the progress of SRI plots plus regular visits to the plots during the growing period by the Director of Extension along with research and extension scientists drew additional farmers to the plots, who interacted scientists and SRI farmers directly. SRI farmers in turn became motivators, freely exchanged information with interested farmers.

The first-season yields with SRI were very encouraging even though most farmers only followed two to three of the six recommended practices, getting 20-50% yield improvement. Farmers were impressed with the crop's performance, especially tillering, panicle size, grain weight, crop health, and low water requirements. This motivated many farmers to adopt SRI in their own fields in the next season.

Motivator-farmers took an interest in supervising other farmers' plots, advising them and sharing implements. Both small and big farmers (over 10 acres) are attracted to SRI technology, with one farmer adopting SRI on over 100 acres. SRI technology with its obvious positive aspects is spreading well with active farmer participation. The spread is being accelerated by farmers' innovations, devising implements that save labor time and cost.

Director of Extension, ANGRAU Senior Scientist (Crop production) Coordinator Senior Scientist (TOT), DAATT Centre, Eluru, West Godavari dist, AP Abstract for World Rice Research Conference, Tokyo-Tsukuba, November 4-7, 2004



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The Director of Extension for Andhra Pradesh state agricultural university (ANGRAU), Dr.

A. Satyanarayana, visited Sri Lanka on a study tour 25-31 January, 2003, to learn about the System of Rice Intensification (SRI). Impressed by its high yield potential with low inputs, especially less irrigation water, he shared what he had learned about SRI back in Andhra Pradesh through a powerpoint presentation supported by self-explanatory visuals.

Presentations were given to scientists, officers of the Department of Agriculture, the Agricultural Commissioner, the Secretary of Agriculture, and farmer organizations.

In the initial stages, people were not convinced about the potential of SRI, having a number of doubts in their minds, particularly researchers who considered rice an aquatic plant. With persistent efforts, the Director of Extension convinced top executives at the university and in government and also farmers. In collaboration with ANGRAU scientists, the extension service organised 500 on-farm demonstration trials in 2003-2004, 200 in dry season and 300 in wet season.

Electronic media were used effectively to popularize SRI. The Director of Extension participated in many interviews over television and interacted with farmers and scientists.

Information was spread through more than 35,000 copies of booklets on SRI, coupled with training on nursery management, transplanting and weeding. News of SRI innovation spread rapidly within the farming community.

Initially only a few innovators accepted SRI in Andhra Pradesh on hearing from the Director of Extension either personally, over telephone, television, or through print media. On-farm demonstrations in kharif 2003-2004 showed an increase of 2.0-2.5 t/ha over conventional methods. Knowledge about the performance of SRI is now diffused all over the state, and the number of adopters increased to about 2,500 the next season. The paper describes the strategy of the Director of Extension in massive awareness-building and large-scale adoption of SRI in Andhra Pradesh.


1. Assistant Director of Extension, 2. Deputy Director of Extension, Acharya N. G. Ranga Agricultural University, Hyderabad, India Abstract for World Rice Research Conference, Tokyo-Tsukuba, Japan, November 4-7, 2004

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Prof. Robert Randriamiharisoa, University of Antananarivo, Madagascar In the predominantly ferralitic soils of Madagascar, available phosphorus and nitrogen are very limited. The high yields resulting with SRI practices may be attributable, at least in part, to the synergistic activity of microorganisms in, on and around the roots. Root exudation is probably a contributing factor.

We investigated with replicated trials the variation in yield associated with different inoculations of paddy seeds made from SRI root exudates extracted 40-45 days after transplantation and before the end of tillering. We compared the results obtained with different applications of compost (F1, F2, and F3) with a control (F0), and with different strengths of inoculant made from root exudates (C1 and C2), again with a control (C0). In all cases SRI cultural practices were used.

Inoculation with root exudates of SRI-grown plants gave better yield compared with the control.

The average for 3 replications with no fertilization and no root exudates was 458 kg/Ha; with inoculation C1 and C2 but without compost fertilization, yield was 568-1282 kg/Ha; with inoculation C1 and C2 and compost fertilization F1, F2 and F3, yield was 1413-2888 kg/Ha We identified by chromatographic and other analyses various microorganisms in the inoculant, including mycorrhizal fungi and the diazotroph Azospirillum. Mycorrhyzae enhance plant roots' access to phosphorus, and Azospirillum contribute N-fixation and other benefits to plants. Both organisms benefit from the aerobic soil conditions that SRI creates compared to conventional growing of rice with flooding of fields. Flooding is especially significant in Madagascar where ferralitic soils contribute to iron toxicity under anaerobic soil conditions.

Much research remains to be done on these relationships, but our results indicate that microorganisms and other substances in SRI root exudates participate in the improvement of yield. Our results indicate also that stimulation of microorganismic processes may make the use of fertilizer much less necessary.

Abstract for World Rice Research Conference, Tokyo-Tsukuba, Japan, November 4-7, 2004





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In Madagascar, paddy rice is the most important staple. The System of Rice Intensification (SRI) was developed there 20 years ago by Fr. Henri de Laulanié to redress the serious problems of hunger and poverty. The spread of SRI has been slow, but is accelerating. This paper reports on results attained by rural households in Eastern Madagascar who have taken up SRI through Kolo Harenas, farmer associations that bring together farmers who are abandoning slash-and-burn cultivation, adopting instead improved methods that do not require forest clearing. SRI is one such method. The System of Rice Improvement (SRA in French), which requires more purchased inputs but less labor for transplanting, water control and weeding, is also disseminated.

This study evaluates SRI and SRI compared with traditional methods of rice cultivation; 5% of KH households are now using SRI, which is more demanding of labor and skill; 15% use SRA methods, and 50% still employ traditional methods; the rest do not grow rice. The data were collected from Kolo Harena families randomly selected from among those which grow rice. Each keeps a 'household book' on its cultivation practices, from which detailed economic data could be obtained.

SRI gave an average yield of 7.7 tons/ha, compared with 3.8 tons/ha for SRA and 1.5 tons/ha with traditional methods. Labor productivity was higher for both SRI and SRI, about triple (125 and 122 compared to 42 kg/day); returns to non-labor cash investments were much higher for SRI than either SRA or traditional methods (81.42 vs. 52.48 vs. 41.11). These results reflect the greater labor requirements of SRI (thus not much higher returns to labor than SRA) but also the reduced cash commitment with SRI (much higher returns to capital investment, important for poor farmers). The paper gives more details on SRI practice and comparisons.

Abstract for World Rice Research Conference, Tokyo-Tsukuba, November 4-7, 2004



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The performance of seven popular and elite rice varieties used in Andhra Pradesh state of India was investigated under two different cultural systems, the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) and standard methods (non-SRI) at Maruteru, Andhra Pradesh, India during dry season 2003-04.

The experiment was laid out in strip plot design with SRI and non-SRI as the main treatments and with varieties as sub-treatments.

Analysis of variance revealed significant differences between SRI and non-SRI for yield and for a majority of yield components and quality characteristics studied. SRI was noticed to be significantly superior with regard to fertile tillers/plant, filled grains/panicle, 1000-grain weight, grain yield, and certain quality parameters, namely, milling per cent and head rice recovery. A yield advantage of 921.9 kg/ha was observed for SRI compared to non-SRI. This enhanced yield was attributable to increased number of fertile tillers (167.5% higher), filled grains per panicle (29% higher), spikelet fertility (6.4%), and 1000-grain weight (1.7%) with SRI practices. Milling per cent and head rice recovery were also significantly higher (4.4 and 4.8%, respectively) under SRI compared to non-SRI. Further, the varieties recorded lower number of days to 50 per cent flowering under SRI compared to non-SRI.

The results also revealed significant differences between the varieties for all characteristics studied, except for fertile tillers/plant and hulling per cent. The variety MTU 1010 had the maximum grain yield (7,213 kg/ha), followed by MTU 1061 (7,208 kg/ha) and MTU 1001 (7,015 kg/ha). Interaction effects of the cultural systems with the varieties were observed to be non-significant for most of the characteristics studied, except for days to 50 per cent flowering, panicle length, spikelet fertility, milling per cent, and head rice recovery. This indicates that SRI was not particularly variety-sensitive and that advantages of the system can be well utilized by any variety.

Poster Abstract for World Rice Research Conference, Tokyo-Tsukuba, November 4-7, 2004


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The System of Rice Intensification (SRI) is an ecofriendly method of rice cultivation that produces more with less external inputs by manipulating agronomic practices. Two of the six focal components of SRI require more effort from farmers: (a) marking a grid on the puddled field surface, to plant young seedlings at regular, wider spacing (25x25 cm), and (b) removing weeds, preferably by churning the soil and incorporating weed biomass into the soil. This work can be made easier and quicker by appropriate implements that can function under wetland conditions to reduce cost of cultivation and improve efficiency and profitability.

(1) A cono rotary weeder designed by the Acharya N. G. Ranga Agricultural University (ANGRAU) has now been redesigned by placing ball-bearings in the wheels to make the operation easier, smoother, and more efficient..

(2) A hollow cylindrical roller made from iron rods, developed by a farmer in Anaparti village, East Godavari District, Andhra Pradesh, India, Mr. Lakshmana Reddy, to mark fields with the desired 25x25 cm spacing greatly reduces the time required to score a grid on the surface of the field. This is easy to operate, gives precision marking, and involves less drudgery, compared with using the wooden rake now commonly used or pegs and lines of rope as the method was originally developed.

These implements have been refined and improved further at the farmers’ level through participatory technology development (PTD), further reducing expenditure and drudgery with increased efficiency, contributing to higher productivity.

Farmers' positive feedback response has been encouraging, and these innovations through PTD are spreading fast across the farming community in Andhra Pradesh. Photographs of the two innovations, the cylindrical marker and the improved weeder, will be displayed along with data on their efficiency.

Deputy Director of Extension, ANGR Agricultural University, Hyderabad Director of Extension, ANGR Agricultural University, Hyderabad Asst.Director of Extension, ANGR Agricultural University, Hyderabad Deputy Director of Extension, ANGR Agricultural University, Hyderabad

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