Choice of Cultivars

The Directorate of Maize Research has developed a number of high-yield hybrid and composite varieties of different maturity groups. It is essential to carefully choose the hybrid or composite of the most appropriate maturity and grain type. It is desirable to buy certified seed of the recommended hybrids and composites. The seed of hybrids must be bought fresh every year.

Date of Sowing

The date of sowing has to be suitably adjusted by making the best use of their natural precipitation and providing adequate time for land preparation for the following crop. In irrigated area, it is most desirable to complete the sowings 10-15 days before the onset of the rain. This practice has given 15% higher yield than that obtained from fields which are sown with or after the onset of rains. Early sown fields get adequate time for weed management. For rainfed areas, which entirely lack irrigation facilities, it will be desirable to sow the crop as soon as adequate amount of soil moisture has been built up to ensure germination and establishment of proper plant stand.

Seedbed Preparation

A clean, smooth, deeply ploughed but firm seedbed is ideal. It is desirable to sow the crop on ridges to avoid damage due to waterlogging and to provide adequate moisture in the root zone. Shallow drainage channels should be provided at suitable intervals across the slope to check losses due to waterlogging.

Fertilizer Application

Besides obtaining high yield, it is desirable to build up soil fertility judicious application of the fertilizers is necessary to optimize returns for every rupee invested. The available quantity of the farmyard manure should be incorporated into the field before sowing. A combination of organic manure and chemical fertilizer is known to give better yield and improve the soil fertility than the use of fertilizer alone.