A Spokesman of Agriculture Department Punjab has said that Punjab government is going to boost gram cultivation in Thar areas through drip irrigation system. Gram is a major Rabi pulse crop in Pakistan. It is grown in areas after rain and floods. It is a short duration crop and can be grown between September and November.
The best time for sowing is the second week of October. Being a leguminous crop it is well suited under dry tracks. It requires winter climate weather condition and is allergic to frost. In normal condition the gram matures within four months or a little later. After reaching maturity stage the gram plant cannot stand heavy rains or hail storm. The crop demand rainy condition but it can be grown in less irrigated areas also. The crop is heat resistant and flourishes under good moisture condition. It can bear drought condition due to long taproot which allows using water from great depths than other pulse. It tolerates acidity but is sensitive to salinity and alkalinity.
It has the ability to stick to 60-80 percent of its nitrogen requirement and excessive nitrogen fertilizer may delay maturity. In normal condition the gram matures within four months or a little later. Chickpea (Gram) grows best with drip irrigation system.
That’s why Government of Punjab is promoting drip irrigation in Thar districts Khushab, Bhakkar, Layyah, Muzaffargarh, Jhang and Mianwali areas where Government of Punjab has announced 75% subsidy on installation of drip irrigation system. Spokesman disclosed that through drip irrigation, not only water saving will be enhanced but also production of per acre gram will be enhanced in these areas.