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Pal, D.K.; Wani, S.P.; Sahrawat, K.L. (2015)
Carbon Sequestration in Indian Soils: Present Status and the Potential.  
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, India Section B: Biological Sciences. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci., India, Sect. B Biol. Sci. 85(2):337–358. The National Academy of Sciences, India
Category: Publication in Journal 
India’s growing self-sufficiency in food production and food stocks since independence suggest that soils have the capacity to produce. Therefore, a review of Indian soils and their capacity to sequester carbon; and the factors favouring C sequestration under different land uses is in order. Several researchers, especially those in The National Bureau of Soil Survey and Land Use Planning and the International Crops Research Institute for Semi-Arid Tropics monitored the changes in soil organic (SOC) and inorganic (SIC) carbon as influenced by land use in the Indo-Gangetic Alluvial Plains and black soil regions between 1980 and 2005. The results showed an increase in SOC stocks due to turnover of greater plant biomass into the soil. Results of long-term fertilizer experiments with rice-based double or triple cropping systems indicate soil’s capacity to store greater C, and maintain higher C in passive pools and that active fraction of soil C can be used as an indicator of soil health. The inclusion of active pool/ labile SOC is expected to improve the performance of Century eco-system model in predicting SOC changes under different climatic conditions. Greenhouse gas emissions from the tropical Indian soils (both zeolitic and non-zeolitic) do not seem to contribute significantly to the global warming potential. The application NPK plus FYM emerged as a cost effective technology for Indian farmers.

In view of the potential of C sequestration by major zeolitic and non-zeolitic soils, the present SOC stock of about 30 Pg can be further increased.
Keywords: Indian soils, Potential of C sequestration, Soil resilience, Greenhouse gases
Institute: International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics
Publ.-ID: 764    Insert: 19.06.2015 11:02 (GMT+1:00) by S.WaniLast update: 19.06.2015 11:05 (GMT+1:00) by S.Wani

Ranga Rao, G.V.; Ratna Kumari; Sahrawat, K.L.; Wani, S.P. (2015)
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for Reducing Pesticide Residues in Crops and Natural Resources. 
New Horizons in Insect Science: Towards Sustainable Pest Management, 322-2089-3_35, © Springer India 2015
Category: Publication in Journal 
Investigation on the pesticide residues during 2006–2009 in various crops and natural resources (soil and water) in the study village (Kothapally, Telangana State (TS)) indicated the presence of a wide range of insecticidal residues. Pooled data of the 80 food crop and cotton samples, two rice grain samples (3 %) showed beta endosulfan residues, and two (3 %) soil samples showed alpha and beta endosulfan residues. In vegetables of the 75 tomato samples, 26 (35 %) were found contaminated with residues of which 4 % had residues above MRLs. Among the 80 brinjal samples, 46 (56 %) had residues, of these 4 % samples had residues above MRLs. Only 13 soil samples from vegetable fields were found contaminated. The frequency of contamination in brinjal fields was high and none of the pulses and cotton samples revealed any pesticide contamination. IPM fields showed substantial reduction sprays which in-turn reflected in lower residues. Initial studies on water analysis indicated the presence of residues in all water sources with higher in bore wells compared to open wells, however, by 2009 the water bodies reflected no residues above the detectable level.

Keywords: IPM, Natural Resources, Residues
Institute: International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics
Publ.-ID: 763    Insert: 19.06.2015 11:00 (GMT+1:00) by S.Wani

Rao, A.N.; Wani, S.P.; Mugalodi Ramesha.; Ladha, J.K. (2015)
Weeds and Weed Management of Rice in Karnataka State, India.  
Weed Technology 2015 29:1–17.
Category: Publication in Journal 
: Rice is one of the staple food crops of India, and Karnataka is one of the major rice-producing states. The primary method of rice establishment in Karnataka is transplanting, but farmers are opting to shift to direct-seeding of rice. Weed management is critical for realizing optimal yield of direct-seeded rice (DSR). The objective of this review was to synthesize the published literature on weeds and weed management in rice in Karnataka, identify improved weed-management technologies for delivery to farmers, and suggest research needs. Some 98 weed species are reported to be associated with rice in Karnataka. Weed control to date in Karnataka has mostly been based on herbicides. Hand-weeding was found to be effective in all methods of rice establishment. However, it is time-consuming, tedious, and costly because labor is becoming scarce and unavailable, and labor wages are higher. Several PRE and POST herbicides that were effective in other Asian countries were also found to be effective in managing weeds in rice established by different methods in Karnataka. Bensulfuron plus pretilachlor and pyrazosulfuron in aerobic rice and pendimethalin, thiobencarb, bispyribac-sodium, cyhalofop, fenoxaprop plus chlorimuron plus metsulfuron, and fenoxaprop plus ethoxysulfuron in dry-DSR were found effective in managing weeds. In wet-DSR, butachlor plus safener and pretilachlor plus safener were effective. Thiobencarb, pendimethalin, pretilachlor, azimsulfuron plus metsulfuron, bispyribac-sodium, butachlor, cinosulfuron, oxadiazon, and quinclorac were found promising for weed management in transplanted rice. Integration of herbicides with hand-weeding or intercultivation was found to be effective in rice established by different methods. Options that were found economical in managing weeds varied across the different rice-establishment methods. The need for developing location-specific, sustainable, integrated weed management and extension of available technologies for the farming community in Karnataka is emphasized. Nomenclature: Azimsulfuron; bensulfuron; bispyribac-sodium; butachlor; chlorimuron; cinosulfuron; cyhalofop; ethoxysulfuron; fenoxaprop; metsulfuron; oxadiazon; pendimethalin; pretilachlor; pyrazosulfuron; quinclorac; thiobencarb; rice, Oryza sativa L.

Keywords: Aerobic rice, dry direct-seeded rice, integrated weed management, transplanted rice, wet direct-seeded rice
Institute: International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics
Publ.-ID: 762    Insert: 19.06.2015 10:55 (GMT+1:00) by S.Wani

Sunitha, M.; Sahrawat, K.L.; Wani, S.P.2015. (2015)
Comparative Evaluation of Inductively Coupled Plasma–Optical Emission Spectroscopy and Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometry for Determining DTPA-Extractable Micronutrients in Soils.  
Publisher: Taylor & Francis. Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis, 00:1–6, 2015.
Category: Publication in Journal 
A study was conducted for comparative evaluation of atomic absorption spectrophotometry (AAS) and inductively coupled plasma–optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES) for determining extractable zinc (Zn), copper (Cu), manganese (Mn), and iron (Fe) in sixty diverse soil samples having a wide range in pH and organic carbon (C). The results were significantly affected by the method of analysis and soil type but generally did not follow a definite trend. Results for extractable Fe in Alfisol samples were significantly greater when using ICP-OES than AAS; and the results for Zn, Cu, and Mn were not significantly different for the two methods. For Vertisol samples, the results for extractable Cu were significantly greater by ICP-OES than by AAS, whereas extractable Fe and Zn were significantly greater by AAS than by ICP-OES, and the results for Mn were not significantly different for the two methods. The results are discussed relative to soil type and differences in soil organic carbon and pH of the samples used in the study.

Keywords:  Alfisols, extractable Fe, Cu, Mn, and Zn, soil testing, Vertisol and associated soils
Institute: International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics
Publ.-ID: 761    Insert: 19.06.2015 10:52 (GMT+1:00) by S.Wani

Wani, S.P.; Girish Chander.; Sahrawat, K.L.; Pardhasaradhi, G. (2015)
Soil-Test-Based Balanced Nutrient Management for Sustainable Intensification and Food Security: Case from Indian Semi-arid Tropics.  
Taylor & Francis. Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis, 46(S1):20–33.
Category: Publication in Journal 
In the semi-arid tropics (SAT), there exists large yield gaps (two- to four-fold) between current farmers’ yields and achievable yields. Apart from water shortages, soil degradation is responsible for the existing gaps and inefficient utilization of whatever scarce water resource is available. On-farm soil fertility testing across different states in Indian SAT during 2001–2012 showed widespread new deficiencies of sulfur (46–96 percent), boron (56–100 percent), and zinc (18–85 percent) in addition to already known phosphorus (21–74 percent) and nitrogen (11–76 percent, derived from soil carbon). Based on these results, a new fertilizer management strategy was designed to meet varying soil fertility needs at the level of a cluster of villages by applying a full nutrient dose if >50 percent fields were deficient and a half dose in the case of fields <50 percent deficient. Improved nutrient management significantly increased crop productivity in groundnut (Arachis hypogaea) (17–86 percent), sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) (30–55 percent), soybean (Glycine max) (10–40 percent), and maize (Zea mays) (10–50 percent) with favorable benefit-cost ratios (1.43–15.2) over farmers’ practice. Nutrient balancing improved nitrogen-fertilizer-use efficiency in respect of plant uptake from soil, transport into grain, use efficiency in food production, and
grain nutritional quality. Balanced-nutrient-managed plots showed better postharvest soil fertility. Residual benefits of sulfur, boron, and zinc were observed in up to three succeeding seasons. Results of soil-test-based nutrient-management trials have sensitized policy makers in some states for desired policy orientation to benefit millions of smallholders in the Indian SAT.
Keywords: Crop productivity, fertilizer-use efficiency, micronutrients, natural resource management, soil health, sulfur
Institute: International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics
Publ.-ID: 760    Insert: 19.06.2015 10:37 (GMT+1:00) by S.Wani

Karlberg, L.; Garg, K.K.; Barron, J.; Wani, S.P. (2015)
Impacts of agricultural water interventions on farm income: An example from the Kothapally watershed, India.  
Published in Agricultural System. Agricultural Systems 136 (2015) 30–38
Category: Publication in Journal 
Agricultural water interventions (AWI), e.g. In-situ soil and water conservation strategies, irrigation, and Damming of rivers to increase groundwater recharge, have been suggested as important strategies to improve Yields in tropical agriculture. Although the biophysical implications of AWIs have been well investigated, the coupling between the biophysical changes and the economic implications thereof is less well understood. In this study we translate the results from a hydrological model, swat, on crop yields for Different cropping systems with and without agricultural water interventions, to hypothetical farm incomes for a watershed, Kothapally, located in Andhra Pradesh, India. It was found that on average, AWI significantly Improved farm incomes by enabling the cultivation of a high value crop during the monsoon season (cotton), supplementary irrigated to bridge dry spells and replacing a traditional crop (sorghum), and also by enhancing the capacity to produce dry season, fully irrigated vegetable crops, in this case exemplified by onion. AWI combined with cotton resulted in more than a doubling of farm incomes compared To traditional sorghum-based systems without AWI during normal and wet years (i.e. For 75% of the years). Interestingly, we observed that the difference between the AWI system and the no intervention system was larger during years of high average rainfall compared to dry years. It was also found that access to Irrigation was more important for farm income than crop choice and AWI per se, and thus farms with Access irrigation benefitted more from AWI compared to farmers lacking access to irrigation. In conclusion, we suggest that in order to assess equity aspects in terms of farm income generation following the Implementation of an AWI project, there is a need for income analyses at the farm level, since income Estimates at the watershed level may mask important differences in economic benefits between Farms.
Keywords: Andhra Pradesh, Hydrological modelling, Cotton, Sorghum, Supplementary irrigation, Soil and water management
Institute: International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics
Publ.-ID: 759    Insert: 19.06.2015 10:24 (GMT+1:00) by S.WaniLast update: 19.06.2015 10:53 (GMT+1:00) by S.Wani

Bhattacharyya, T.; Ray, S.K.; Mauryaa, U.K.; Chandran, P.; Pal, D.K.; Durge, S.L.; Nimkar, A.M.; SM Sheikh, S.M.; Kuchankar, H.W.; Telpande, B.; Vishakha Dongre; Ashwini Kolhe. (2015)
Carbon and nitrogen estimation in soils: Standardizing methods and internal standards for C/N analyzer. 
National Bureau of Soil Survey & Land Use Planning, Amravati Road, Nagpur-440 010, Maharashtra, India J. Indian Chem. Soc.,Vol. 92, February 2015, pp. 263-269
Category: Publication in Journal 
It has been found that soil organic carbon (SOC) is very easily oxidized in the oven during analysis through C/N analyzer. There is no literatures on the relative effects of CaCO3 in the determination of total C in soils. To avoid, effects, if any, we have developed separate methods for calcareous and non-calcareous soils. It is hoped that, with a prior knowledge of soil-site, a suitable method can be chosen for both these types of soils to determine C and N in soils.
Keywords: Soil organic carbon (SOC), calcareous soils, non-calcareous soils, C/N analyzer.
Institute: International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics
Publ.-ID: 758    Insert: 19.06.2015 10:23 (GMT+1:00) by S.Wani

Uppal, R.K.; Wani, S.P.; Kaushal K. Garg.; AlagarswamyI, G. (2015)
Balanced nutrition increases yield of pearl millet under drought.  
Elsevier B.V.Field Crops Research 177 (2015) 86–97.
Category: Publication in Journal 
Improving the climate resilience of crops is particularly important in the semi-arid tropics (SAT) where variability and uncertainty of precipitation is expected to increase under climate change with detrimental impacts on the vulnerability of livelihoods of small farm holders. This study analyses a long-term strategic experiment datasets from fifteen experiments (1981–1995) managed under different fertility levels at International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), Patancheru and on-farm balanced nutrition management trials (2010–2012) in Karnataka, India to evaluate the pearl millet performance in contrasting seasons with improved agronomic management. Long-term climate variability and yield trends were analyzed using ICRISAT’s weather datasets. On-farm data analysis revealed that majority of farmers’ field soils were deficient in organic carbon, available phosphorous, sulphur, zinc and boron at all the locations studied. Pearl millet grain yield and above ground dry matter was improved significantly with balanced nutrient application (NPK + S + Zn + B) in farmers’ field which were critically deficient in the soil nutrients. Even in comparatively drier years, application of balanced nutrient significantly increased grain yield and aboveground dry matter which provides resilience against drought through enhanced water productivity. Long-term experiments conducted in ICRISAT showed that nitro-gen application increased grain yield and above ground dry matter in pearl millet however seasonal variability had a greater effect on yield than cultivars and applied N. Pearl millet yield was positively associated with August maximum temperature and negatively with seasonal precipitation. September precipitation >125 mm which coincided with grain filling stage reduced grain yield. Benefit: cost analysis showed that balanced nutrient application of pearl millet is an economically sustainable option across the seasons. Pearl millet can be an important component of climate resilient agriculture in low production environments when managed with improved agronomic practices.
Keywords: Climate change, Nitrogen use efficiency, Resilience, Rainfed agriculture, Fertilizer
Institute: International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics
Publ.-ID: 757    Insert: 19.06.2015 10:22 (GMT+1:00) by S.WaniLast update: 19.06.2015 10:48 (GMT+1:00) by S.Wani

Bhattacharyya, T.; Chandran, P.; Ray, S.K.; Tiwary, P.; Ajit Dharmik; Mandal, D.K.; Mandal, C.; Chatterji, S.; Pal, D.K.; Obi Reddy, G.P.; Sarkar, D.; Singh, S.K. (2015)
WebGeoSIS as soil information technology: A conceptual framework. 
ICAR-National Bureau of Soil Survey and Land Use Planning, Nagpur 440 033, India. Nagpur Agropedology 2014, 24 (02), 222-233.
Category: Publication in Journal 
Soil is one of the essential natural resource for plant growth and agricultural production. Besides, there are other soil related concerns in environmental protection, pollution control, carbon sequestration Vis-à- Vis climate change, organic farming and other aspects of land use. Therefore, there is a need for an easily accessible and standardized soil information database at both temporal and spatial scales which can act as soil information technology (SIT). The SIT would allow a rational transfer of agricultural technologies and management practices and prove to be a sound reference base to facilitate effective transfer of soil information to those involved in planning, decision making and implementation. Web-based technology has facilitated the web publication of geo-referenced soil and other information that will be user-friendly and interactive with wider applicability and can be used by the stakeholders at any time and from any geographical locations. The present paper outlines a conceptual framework of WebGeoSIS, a web-based geo-referenced soil information system, that provides i) access to soil and related data, ii) tools to analyze the soil data, and iii) capabilities to visualize all data in a map- based interface which can pave the way for developing soil information technology.
Keywords: Agricultural technologies, web-based technology, soil information system.
Institute: International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics
Publ.-ID: 756    Insert: 19.06.2015 10:19 (GMT+1:00) by S.Wani

Kamara, A.Y., Omoigui, L.O., Ewansiha, S.U., Eyelevel, F., Chikoye, D., and Ajeigbe, H.A (2011)
Performance of semi-determinate and indeterminate cowpeas relay-cropped into maize in Northeast Nigeria 
African Journal of Agricultural Research Vol. 6(7), pp. 1763-1770
Category: Publication in Journal (peer-reviewed) 
Field trials were conducted in 2005 and 2006 in Tilla (northern Guinea savanna) and Sabon-Gari (Sudan savanna) in northeast Nigeria to determine the performance of two improved cowpea varieties when relay-intercropped with early and late maize, 6 and 8 weeks after planting the maize. Grain yield, number of branches and number of pods per plant were higher for the variety IT89KD-288 than for IT97K-499-35, whether planted sole or relay-intercropped with maize. Grain yield was lower for IT97K-499-35 than for IT89KD-288 when relay-intercropped with maize irrespective of the maturity period of the companion maize crop. This may be due to the indeterminate growth habit and shade tolerance of IT89KD-288
which allowed a higher pod load than IT97K-499-35. However, relay-intercropping with early maize gave higher yield than relay-intercropping into late maize. Also relay-intercropping at 6 weeks after planting maize (WAP) gave a higher yield than relay-intercropping at 8 WAP. This therefore, suggests that introducing cowpea into short statured early maize may mean less competition for light and soil resources compared to taller late maize. Also introducing the cowpea earlier may allow the crop to make full use of soil moisture during the cropping season.
Keywords: Cowpea, maize, grain, relay-intercropping, savanna, northeast Nigeria
Institute: International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics
Publ.-ID: 644    Insert: 10.07.2012 11:27 (GMT+1:00) by S.Wani

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