How to Grow Basmati Rice from Seed – A Full Guide

Introduction: Hello rice farmers, here is the complete guide of how to grow Basmati Rice from seed along with popular Basmati Varities. Basmati rice is famous for its excellent cooking and eating qualities. Around 20 percent area under rice cultivation is occupied by basmati rice. India is also earning a good amount of foreign exchange on exports of basmati rice. Higher yields can be achieved by adopting proper scientific methods in cultivation of basmati rice.

A guide to How to Grow Basmati Rice from Seed

Basmati Rice Cultivation from Seed.
Basmati Rice Cultivation from Seed.

Improved Varieties:

Pusa Basmati No. 1:It is about 100 cm tall and is photo insensitive. It prefers high fertile soils. Grains are superfine and elongate well while cooking. Contains mild aroma. After cooking rice is non-sticky and soft to eat. Maturity period is140 days. Yield is about 16 quintal per acre.

Pusa Basmati 1121: Height is 120 cm tall. Good cooking quality. It has longest cooked rice length among all aromatic rice varieties which were recommended for cultivation in Punjab. It is photo insensitive and matures in 137 days after seeding. Yield-13.7 quintals of basmati rice per acre.

Basmati 370: It is about 165 cm tall, photo sensitive and lodge under high fertility conditions. It does well on average fertility soils. Grains are superfine, highly aromatic and elongate almost double during cooking. It matures after 150 days. Average yield is about 12 quintals per acre.

Super Basmati: It is 113 cm tall and is weakly photo sensitive. It does best under medium fertility conditions. It matures after 145 days after seeding. Average yield is 14 quintal of per acre.

Punjab Basmati 2:It is about 125 cm tall and is weakly photosensitive. Matures after 140 days after seeding. Its average yield is 12.6 quintals of per acre.

Punjab Mehak :This is an aromatic rice variety. It is photo insensitive and is about 100 cm tall. It matures after 125 days after seeding. Possess resistance to most of the patho types of bacterial blight which are prevalent in Punjab. Its average yield is about 17 quintal per acre.

Now, let us get into complete requirements for how to grow Basmati Rice from seed in open field cultivation.

Climatic conditions required for growing Basmati Rice from seed

Sufficient water facilities are essential for basmati rice cultivation. Climatic regions with high humidity and prolonged sunshine are suitable for basmati rice cultivation. When crop matures in cooler climatic conditions quality of the produce will be superior. Where high temperature during grain filling reduces the quality.

Soils suitable for growing Basmati Rice from seed

Soils with good drainage facilities should be preferred. Required soil pH is 5.0-8.0. Avoid soils with poor drainage and saline in nature.

Crop rotations in Basmati rice farming:

It can be grown in crop rotations in crops like wheat, bajra, sunflower, celery, berseem and maize etc.

Time of Nursery Sowing:

For late maturing types nursery should be sown during second fort night of June and for early maturing types nursery was sown during first fort night of June.

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Unpuddled direct seeded Basmati rice:

We can grow basmati rice by direct sowing by practicing the following points.

  • Sowing of basmati rice by direct seeding only in medium to heavy textured soils.
  • Proper control of weeds is important for raising a healthy crop of direct seeded basmati rice.
  • Ensure its proper establishment by sowing seeds with tractor drawn rice drill. 

The seed rate for growing Basmati Rice from seed

8 to 10 kg seed per acre with the row to row spacing of 20cm. 

Transplanting time in Basmati Rice farming :

Time of transplanting is an important factor in determining the yield and quality of the Basmati rice. Basmati 386 and Basmati 370 if transplanted too early have a prolonged vegetative phase resulting into a leafy and tall crop. Such crop is highly prone to lodging because of excessive vegetative growth and height. To prevent lodging, lopping of the upper half of crop canopy after 45 days of transplanting may be done. Further it also reduce stem borer damage. Being photoperiod sensitive these will flower when a specific day length was met. The early transplanted crop also experiences high temperature at flowering which in result lowers the cooking quality. Proper time of transplanting for Basmati 386 and Basmati 370 is second fortnight of July. Punjab Mehak 1, Punjab Basmati 2, Pusa Basmati 1121, Super Basmati and Pusa Basmati No. 1 etc. may be transplanted during first fortnight of July. The seedlings of 25-35 days old with 5-6 leaves stage are suitable for transplanting in to main field. Transplanting old seedling cause reduced tillering and yield in basmati rice cultivation.

The method of Transplanting in Basmati Rice farming :

The nursery should be irrigated before uprooting the seedlings. Seedlings should be transplanted carefully after washing to remove the mud with a spacing of 20 x 15 cm (33 hills/sq. metre) in well puddled field.

Fertilizer Application or Fertilizer management in Basmati Rice farming:

High doses of nitrogen cause the crop to prone lodging by causing excessive vegetative growth which results in a reduction in yield. Application of 75 kg of superphosphate per acre prior to last puddling is recommended.  Broadcasting of 18 kg urea per acre in two splits is recommended. The first dose needs to be applied after three weeks and the second, six weeks after transplanting. Nitrogenous fertilizer should be applied when water is not standing in the field if possible. Organic manures have to be added before last ploughing to the soil.

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Basmati plant protection measures: 

Important insect pests of Basmati Rice:

Stem borers: most serious pest of rice crop which may cause severe yield losses.

Management:

Spraying of one litre of Coroban/Dursban/Classic/Force 20 EC (chlorpyriphos) or 15g Fipronil 80% WG (fipronil) in 100 litres of water per acre.

Applying 10 kg Padan 4G or 6 kg Regent/Mortel 0.3G (fipronil) or 5 kg Foratox 10 G (phorate) or 4 kg Dursban 10G (chlorpyriphos) per acre in standing water is advisable for better control.

Rice hispa and Leaf folder:

Management:

Avoid excessive fertilization. Cut the shoot tips to prevent egg laying of pests. 

Important Diseases of Basmati Rice:

Blast diseases:

Management:

Spraying of  Indofil Z-78, @ 500 g or Hinosan (ediphenfos) @ 200 ml in 200 litre of water per acre at maximum tillering and ear emergence stages.

Foot rot disease of Basmati Rice:

Dipping the seeds in Bavistin 50 WP @ 0.05% + Streptocycline (0.01%) for 12 hours and smear the seeds with talc formulation of T. harzianum @ 15 grams per kg of seed immediately before sowing.

Collection and destruction of infected plants. 

Harvesting and threshing of Basamti Paddy:

The crop should be harvested as soon as they mature i.e. when the ears are nearly ripe and the straw has turned up into yellow color. Delaying in harvesting may cause over-ripening and grains shattering. The harvested crop preferably should be threshed on the same day or next day of harvesting. Delayed threshing will cause high shattering losses, reduced head rice recovery and ultimately reduces the market price of the crop. Mostly harvesting should be done 30 to 40 days after flowering. Manual or mechanical harvesting is practiced. 

The yield of Basmati Rice:

Farmers can get a yield of 22-25 quintals per acre if everything was done in a meticulous way by adopting proper package of practices. However, for higher yields in Basmati rice farming, the farmer has to go for proper care and management in basmati rice cultivation and also can prefer organic basmati rice cultivation.

Conclusion of growing Basmati Rice from seed: this is all about Basmati rice farming in India. If you have any queries, comment below.

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