Agro-climatic onset of cropping season: A tool for determining optimum date of sowing in dry zones of southern Karnataka
LINGARAJ HUGGI*, H.S. SHIVARAMU, M.H. MANJUNATAHA, D.V. SOUMYA, P. VIJAYA KUMAR and MANOJ M. LUNAGARIA
The study was conducted to analyse the rainfall pattern of dry farming zones of Southern Karnataka to arrive at proper date of sowing by considering parameters like threshold rainfall (20 mm), threshold dry day (2.5 mm) and threshold dry spell period (10 days) as a main defining parameters for decision making in sowing of major crops (finger millet, pigeonpea, groundnut, etc.). In all the three zones, the agro-climatic onset of cropping season was earlier as compared to meteorological onset (June 1st week) due to bimodal distribution of rainfall having its peaks in May and September month. In Central Dry Zone, Southern Dry Zone and Eastern Dry Zone, fourteenth June, thirteenth June and twentythird May were the agro-climatic onset dates (average of all stations in each zone), respectively. Station wise analysis of the rainfall revealed different agro-climatic onset dates. Ninth May in central dry zone, eighth May in eastern dry zone and fifth May in southern dry zone were the earliest onset dates. These variations in between zonal and station specific onset dates were due to spatio-temporal variations in rainfall. Therefore, advancements in sowing of crops based on the agro-climatic onset should be taken into account for betterment of crop production.