Organic Moong Dal Production -Cultivation, Farming

Ingtroduction to Organic Moong Dal Production, Cultivation, Farming in India

The Mung Dal commonly referred to as the moong bean, green gram, monggo, or mung. Mung Dal is an important pulse crop belonging to the Fabaceae family. The Mung Dal is around the olive, small green bean with a soft texture and sweet flavour. The Mung Dal is the seed of Vigna radiata, belonging to the Indian subcontinent. Mung Dal is a rich source of protein along with iron and fibre. It can be cultivated as Kharif in addition to a summer crop.  Moong Dal is an Indian origin crop and can grow as a relay crop to overcome the risk.

A Step By Step Guide to Organic Moong Dal Production

India is one of the largest importers, producers, and consumers of pulses. In India, cultivated these pulses with minimum use of resources, and hence, it becomes less costly even compared to animal protein. Among the pulses, a green gram is the best source of high-quality protein with good digestibility and Moong is consumed as whole grains, sprouted form along with dhal in a variety of ways in homes. Moong Dal is also used as a green manuring crop. Moreover, this can be used as feed for cattle even husk of the seed can be soaked in water and used as cattle feed. In India, these crops are cultivated in 3 different seasons, viz., summer, Rabi, and Kharif. Summer moong can be grown after harvesting potato, mustard, pea, gram, linseed. Moong Dal cultivation is mainly important to increase soil fertility in these areas where wheat-paddy crop rotation is used.  India is the main producer of green grams in the world and almost grown in all the States. It is grown in around 36 lakh hectares of land with the total production of around 17 lakh tonnes of grain with a productivity of around 500 kg/hectare. The major Moong Dal growing States in the country are Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Orissa, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, and Bihar.

Organic Moong Dal Farming.
Organic Moong Dal Farming.

Mung Dal can be grown as crop rotation to improve soil fertility. Sprouted green gram seeds hold more protein, so it can be consumed directly. It helps in weight control and also lowers blood pressure. Mung Dal in India mainly grown as a subsistence intercrop during the Kharif season. Green gram offers protein requirement for a vegetarian population of the country. In India, it is consumed in the form of the whole pulse along with a split pulse. Kitchidi prepared with Green gram or moong dal is suggested to the aged or ill people because it is an easily digestible diet.

SSL 1827 – This variety is made by cross-breeding with Rice bean and green gram. The average yield of this type is 5.0 quintal/acre. The variety is mainly resistant to the yellow mosaic virus.

ML 2056 – This variety is best suitable for the Kharif season. Plants are grown up to medium height and ready to harvest within 75 days. Each pod contains nearly 11 to 12 seeds. It is tolerant of Cercospora and yellow mosaic along with bacterial leaf spots. Also, it is tolerant of sucking pests like whitefly and jassid. The average yield of this type is 4.5 quintals/acre.

SML 668 – It is best suitable for summer sowing. These plants are dwarf and ready to harvest within 61 days. Pods are long and each pod contains nearly 10 to 11 seeds. It is tolerant of thrips and yellow mosaic. The average yield of this type is 4.5 quintals/acre.

SML 832 – It is suitable for summer sowing. These plants are medium height and ready to harvest within 62 days. Each pod contains nearly 10 seeds. Grains are shinning green color and medium size. The average yield of this type is 4.6 quintals/acre.

TMB 37 – It well Suitable for the summer or spring season. The type of variety cultivation in Punjab and ready to harvest within 60days.

ML 818 – It is suitable for the Kharif season. Plants are grown up to medium height and ready to harvest within 80 days. Each pod contains nearly 10 to 11 seeds. It is moderately resistant to Cercospora and yellow mosaic along with bacterial leaf spots. The average yield of this type is 4.9 quintals/acre.

PAU 911: It is also suitable for the Kharif season and ready to harvest within 75 days. Each pod contains nearly 9 to 11 seeds. The average yield of this type is 4.9 quintals/acre. Grains are green and medium bold.

Other States Variety

Jawahar- 45 – This is suitable for the northern and peninsular zones of India. Ready to harvest within 75 to 90 days. The average yield of this type is 4 to 5.2 quintal/acre.

ML 1 – Medium duration variety and well suitable for Haryana and Punjab states. Ready to harvest in 90 days. The average yield of this type is 3 to 4 quintal/acre.

Type 1 – Early maturing variety and ready to harvest within 60 to 65 days. Well suitable for green manuring and grains purpose. The average yield of this type is 2.4 to 3.6 quintal/acre.

Hybrid Varieties of Green Gram in India;

Some of the hybrid varieties of a Green gram are BM-4, PDM-54, JM-72, RUM-1, HUM-12, K-851 & PDM-11

Climatic and Soil Management in Organic Moong Dal Production

Moong Dal grows best at an altitude of 0 to 1600 m above sea level and under warm climatic conditions (28 to 30°C). Green grams are well suitable to red sandy loam soils but also do reasonably well on not too exhausted sandy soils. Green grams are not tolerant of poorly drained, wet soils. They are drought tolerant and will give reasonable yields with a minimum of 650 mm of yearly rainfall. Heavy rainfall results in improved vegetative growth with reduced development and pod setting. 

Moong Dal can be cultivated on a wide range of soil. It gives the best results when grown on well-drained loamy, sandy-loam soils. Waterlogged and saline soils are not suitable for cultivation. Loam to sandy loam soils is considered the best soil for mung bean cultivation. The soil must be well-drained and even temporary waterlogging may damage the crop. Acidic and saline-alkali soils are not suitable for mung bean cultivation. The optimum soil pH level is from 6.5 to 7.5 and fairly tolerant of soil salinity.

Preparation of Land for Organic Moong Dal Production

For Organic Moong Dal cultivation, there is no need for fine seedbed preparation and 1 or 2 ploughings followed by harrowing is enough for this crop. Moong Dal is cultivated on deep soils. For the Moong Dal crop, no-tillage is needed, which is used as rice fallow as the seed is broadcasted in a standing crop of Rice around a week before its harvest. Tillage assures the thorough mixing of fertilizers, pesticides, and manures in the soil. It avoids the growth of the weeds and helps in seed germination, deep percolation of roots, avoids soil erosion, and holds the soil moisture. Tillage is the most important part of land preparation.

Time of Sowing and Sowing Method in Moong Dal Production

The Rabi crop in September or October and the Kharif crop are sown in June to July. Coming to the spring crop, it is to be sown by 15 February and harvested by the middle of May. The summer crop is sown by 15 April. The Moong Dal seed may be sown by broadcasting or it may be drilled in furrows behind a plough, or with a 3 or 4 countered desi drill, in rows 20 to 30cm apart. The seed rate of Moong Dal varies from 15 to 20kg per hectare when sown alone and for mixed crops 2 to 6kg per hectare. The best time for Kharif sowing is the first fortnight of July and the best time for summer moong cultivation is from March to April.

Seed Rate and Spacing Requirements in Green Gram Crop

Use plant to plant spacing of 10 cm and row spacing of 30 cm for Kharif sowing. For Rabi sowing use plant to plant spacing of 7 cm and row spacing of 22.5 cm. As the Moong Dal crop considered, the 10 cm X 30 cm of spacing is required. The plant population is 3.33 Lakh plants/hectare. Proper spacing is required for the best growth and aeration. It’s also helpful to do other operations like inter-cultivation, picking up insects and pests in the crop. By keeping the proper spacing, the infestation will be minimized. For the summer season, use a seed rate of 12 to 15 kg/acre whereas, for the Kharif season, the seed rate of 8 to 9 kg/acre is required.

Propagation and Planting in Organic Moong Dal Production

Land must be prepared to a medium tilth before planting so that planting can start instantly after the rain starts. When using oxen plough for green gram planting, place the seed at the side of the furrow. Need to avoid planting green grams for more than one season because disease organisms and toxic residues from the previous Moong Dal crop will affect the next crop harmfully.

Propagation is by seeds. These seeds must be disease-free or certified. Damaged seeds should not be planted. Before planting a seed, the land must be prepared to a fine tilth.  Planting must be done at the beginning of the rains if production is rain-fed. Delayed sowing may result in crop failure or reduced yield. Germination occurs within 5 to 7 days and this completely based on the variety and environmental factors. Green grams can be planted alone or intercropped with other crops like sorghum, cowpeas, maize, etc.

Propagation is by seed and there is no seed dormancy. Moong Dal seeds may sprout in the pod under very humid conditions. In higher rainfall areas, it is suggested to grow green grams on raised beds. Prepare the beds, raised around 20 cm and spaced 1 m from the center of one bed to the center of the next. Sow seeds on raised beds in 2 rows per bed, spaced at a distance of 45 cm.

Moong Dal will respond to manure or fertilizer application but will give satisfactory results if grown on comparatively good soil. Green gram is grown mainly on smallholdings, frequently as intercrops or mixed crops. Associated crops are generally of longer duration than a green gram (cotton, sorghum, and sugar-cane). To make use of a short cropping period, a short-duration green gram is frequently relay-cropped. 

Irrigation Requirements in Moong Dal Production

Moong Dal is mostly grown as a Kharif crop. If needed provide irrigation based on the climatic conditions. For the summer season crop, 3 to 5 irrigations are required based on the climatic condition and soil type. For achieving good yield stop irrigation 55 days after sowing.

For rainfed crops, irrigation is not mandatory but other than rain-fed crops, it needs 2 to 3 irrigations. Critical stages of irrigation at flower initiation which is 35 days after sowing, Pod filling 55 days after sowing. The water requirement in the Moong Dal crop is 300 mm to 400 mm. If the waterlogging condition seen at flowering and pod filling stages, it decreases the yield up to 75% and more. The suitable irrigation gives high vegetation and damages the weed seeds. Proper irrigation is helping to spread the fertilizer equally in the crop. For high yield and proper flowering, good irrigation is mandatory.

Organic Nutrients and Manures Requirements in Moong Dal Production

The integrated plant nutrient system helps in maintaining and improving soil fertility for sustaining crop productivity. Cultivation of pulses helps the following crop to the extent of 40 kg N/ha. Organic manures comprise both micro and macronutrients whose application into the soil, results in improved soil condition by significantly increasing the level of N fixation. Using organic manures in addition to inorganic fertilizers leads to an increase in productivity and also sustain the soil health for a longer period.

Provide a good substrate for the growth of microorganisms and keep a favorable nutritional balance and soil physical properties. It is recognized that the combined source of chemical fertilizers and organic matter plays an important role in increasing the productivity of the soil. The yield of Moong Dal can be improved by the balanced use of fertilizers and also improve yield by handling the organic manures properly.

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Organic Pests and Diseases Control in Moong Dal Production

Pests – Whiteflies, Aphids, Jassids, and Pod borer

Diseases – Leaf crinkle, Leaf curl, Yellow mosaic, Mosaic mottle, Seed and Seedling rot, Cercospora leaf spot. Mosaic is spread by whiteflies and hence, it must be controlled by spraying of systemic insecticides.

The most popular pest found in Moong Dal is a Stem fly that affects the plant in the early stages thereby leading to drying and withering. The common pest found in the growing stage of the Green gram plant are aphids, leaf-hopper, and whitefly that affect the Green gram crop. These pests can be controlled by spraying with the solution of Phosphomidan or Dimethoate with 2ml/liter of water.

The yellow mosaic disease can be observed in the growing stage of a Green gram which results in severe damage to the plants when appeared. Moreover, leaf crinkle and leaf curl disease can also be found thereby damaging the crop. The plants must be removed as fast as they appear. Moong Dal crops affected by diseases like root rot, wilt which can be controlled by spraying the solution of Bavistin by 0.1%. Applying a spray of Bavistin solution by 1% Cercospora and Powdery mildew can be controlled easily.

When and How to Harvest Moong Dal

Best time of harvesting of Moong Dal when 85% of pods get matured. Harvesting Moong Dal can be done by 2 to 5 hand-pickings at weekly intervals and is the most expensive single operation in growing Moong Dal. Short-duration cultivars, which ripen more regularly, may be processed as entire plants on small rice threshers. Cultivars differ markedly in harvesting efficiency, based on the size and position of pods.

Harvesting before the maturity of the crop generally results in lower yields, poor grain quality, a higher proportion of immature seeds, and more chances of infestation during storage. Do harvesting with a sickle. After harvesting carried out threshing. After threshing, seeds are clean properly and dried in the sunshine. Delay in harvesting will result in the shattering of pods and other losses caused by pests.

Threshing and Processing – After harvesting the crop, it is cleaned and sun-dried to about 12% moisture content and then stored in a good place. Make sure to clean the thrashing yard to avoid any transmission of pests and diseases.

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