How to Grow Sorghum from Seed? Sorghum, often known as jowar, is an important food and fodder grain crop. Sorghum has the same nutritional value as corn, which is why it is becoming more popular as a livestock feed. Sorghum (or) Jowar is also used in the manufacturing of ethanol, grain alcohol, starch, glue, and paper, in addition to food and livestock feed. Jowar (or) Sorghum production is becoming more popular due to its remarkable drought tolerance. Sorghum, like corn, is very nutritious and can be utilised as green fodder, dry fodder, hay, or silage.
How to Grow Sorghum from Seed?
1. Climate Selection
Jowar, often known as sorghum, is a tropical crop. Temperatures between 25°C and 32°C are ideal for sorghum growth, however, temperatures below 16°C are detrimental to the crop. Annual rainfall of roughly 40 cm is required for the jowar crop. Jowar is a drought-tolerant crop that is ideal for dry areas. Too much moisture and prolonged dryness are unsuitable for sorghum farming.
2. Soil Preparation to Grow Sorghum from Seed
Sorghum crops can grow in a variety of soil types, but they thrive in sandy loam soils with good drainage. A pH range of 6 to 7.5 is good for cultivation and growth. For weed-free sowing, the main field should be ploughed and levelled to a fine tilth.
3. Land Preparation to Grow Sorghum from Seed
To prepare a good seedbed, avoid rough fields and plough 1-2 times followed by 2 crosswise harrowings.
4. Seed Rate and Sowing Method
A seed rate of 35-40 kg per hectare is adequate, and sowing should be done by drilling @ 25 cm rowtorow distance. It is best to avoid seed broadcasting. The seed should not be planted deeper than 2-3 cm.
5. Fertilizer to Grow Sorghum from Seed
FYM (Farm Yard Manure) – 10-15 tone for 1 acre of land. Basal application of; at the time of sowing
- N – 60 Kg.
- P2O5 – 40 kg.
- K2O – 40 kg.
1 month after sowing, apply a top dressing of 35 kg N/ha. In low rainfall and rainfed locations, 60-65 kg N/ha should be treated at sowing time. 45-60 kg S/ha should be supplied to sulphur-deficient soils.
If the crop is planted during the monsoon season (July), it may require one to three irrigations, depending on rainfall. Due to the high temperatures, 6 to 7 irrigations may be necessary for summer crops. Rabi season crops require four to five irrigations. Irrigation’s critical stages are (For Rabi season)
- 30-45 days (seedling elongation stage)
- 60-65 days (reproductive or heading stages)
- 70-75 days (panicle emergence)
- 90-95 days (grain development stage)
Assume, however, that just one irrigation system is available. In that scenario, use Dithane M 45 – 0.2% + Bavistin 0.2% twice at 10-day intervals right before booting (40-50 days) from blooming or Dithane M 45 – 0.2% + Bavistin 0.2% twice after flowering begins.
7. Weed Control
Weeder cum mulcher should give 1 hoeing @ 3 weeks crop stage to suppress weeds in the Sorghum crop. To effectively suppress weeds, a preemergence application of atrazine at 0.50 kg/ha in 650 litres of water should be used.
8. Pests and Diseases
Crops of sorghum are vulnerable to numerous pests and diseases. Stem borer, shootfly, and sorghum midge are insects or pests that affect sorghum.
- To manage sorghum midges, use a 125 ml/ha carbofuran/malathion spray.
- Use endosulfan @ 0.075 sprays. Sooty stripe, anthracnose, and zonate leaf spot are diseases that affect sorghum.
- To control the early stages of the anthracnose illness, spritz carbendazim @ 5 grams/litre water.
- Summer crops are more susceptible to shooting flies. As a result, this carbofuran 3G @ 3 to 4 kg/ha should be used to suppress shoot fly during sowing.
- To control or avoid stem borers, the crop should be planted in July.
- It is also effective to use a 0.05% endosulfan spray 2 to 3 times per week for 10 to 14 days.
- The crop will be ready for harvesting in single-cut types 65 to 75 days after seeding (50%, blooming stage).
- The initial cut in multi-cut types should be done at 45-50 days, and the following cuts should be done at 1-month intervals.
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