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1. Apply recommended dose of fertilizers (125 kg N + 30 kg P2O5+ 30 kg K2O/ha). Apply 1/3 nitrogen, whole of the phosphorus and potassium before the last puddling.
2. Broadcast the remaining nitrogen in two equal splits, one 3 weeks after transplanting and the other six weeks after transplanting. Skip phosphorus application to rice if recommended dose of phosphorus has been applied to the preceding wheat crop.
3. It is also advisable to drain off water from field before Urea application. Water level upto 2-5 cm should be maintained 3 days after application of fertilizer. To avoid excess N application, use Leaf colour chart as per the guidelines given in the package of practices.
4. Deficiency of Zn is generally encountered in soil with coarse texture, low in organic matter, high in pH and calcium carbonate content. To control the Zn deficiency in rice 25 kg of zinc sulphate per hectare is recommended at last puddling.
5. Where Zn deficiency is noticed in the growing crop, apply this quantity of zinc sulphate as soon as possible. Always prefer to apply zinc sulphate through soil application rather than foliar spray to utilize its residual effect for the subsequent crop.
6. In light soils or in areas where the crop suffers water stress at any stage, symptoms of Fe deficiency appear. To correct its deficiency, spray the crop with 1.0 per cent ferrous sulphate solution (1kg ferrous sulphate in 100 lt. of water) at weekly interval.
7. Besides this, frequent heavy irrigation should be given to ensure ponding of water in the rice field. Green manuring with Sesbania aculaeta (Dhaincha) also helps in reducing the occurrence of iron deficiency in coarse textured soil.
8. In general basmati varieties are low nitrogen responsive. High N-application results in excessive vegetative growth thereby, making the crop prone to lodging, attack of insect pests and diseases leading to low yield.
9. Further, the time of N-fertilizer application is also very important. There is no need to apply nitrogenous fertilizer during transplanting time. For tall basmati varieties, 18 kg urea in two splits and for others basmati cultivars; 36kg urea in two splits. (three weeks after transplanting and six weeks after transplanting) is recommended.
10. Apply 75 Kg SSP before last puddling, if the P status in the soil is low or skip P application if it was applied to preceding wheat crop.
Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana