Monday, October 28, 2013

Fodder Cultivation - Bajra & Maize

This year the retreating monsoons commenced rather late at Savera Farms. Significant rains came pouring in only around mid October. When the monsoons finally set in, we grabbed the opportunity to augment our fodder acreage using traditional rain fed method. Occasionally our fodder mix includes Bajra and Maize and we needed to increase the supply. This is our first attempt into land crops like these so we are anxious to see how these fare at Savera Farms. We were told to expect the first harvest in about 90- 100 days, sometime in February 2014.

We are already feeding our goats CO4, Agathi, Subabul in addition to the concentrate mix. A treat of Bajra and Maize fodder usually gets them pretty excited. While we chose rain fed irrigation for most of the acreages, we planned for drip irrigation as a back up as well. Rain fed acres were broadcasted with seeds after initial soil prep. Since these crops are annual harvests, namely during monsoons, our drip fed areas should be able to secure uninterrupted production during lean monsoon months.

There are several fodder crops available and our currently choice of Bajra and Maize was driven by season, resource requirement and net cost of production.We were advised line spacing of 15 cm by 60 cm though there were various options discussed. Minimal investment was made on land preparation but keeping an eye of self-sustainability, soil enhancement using goat manure was done. For those interested in learning more, here is a brief article on goat manure. A couple of rounds of disc plough and 5 fingers seems to be sufficient prior to direct seeding. With recent showers, sprouting was seen in about 4-5 days as seen here. This section includes drip feed acres will be supplement with urea. The expectation is to harvest in excess of 18-20 tonnes per acre due to controlled irrigation and fertigation.

Those with interest in cultivation and production capabilities of Bajra and Maize, please get in touch with us. We would like to consider long term procurement contracts. Ideal producers would be within 200-250km radius from Sivagangai with some cultivation infrastructure and experience.


  1. hi
    its really very easy to grow CO4 i have 2 acres in pondicherry ,just growing with cowdung n EM THATs all really grows out of control ......

    1. Feel free to provide details around your cultivation techniques. If you'd like to share any pics, we can always upload it on the blog...

  2. Hi Kaustubh, I appreciate your brutally frankness in sharing of your experiencs, which I know has a lot of hardwork behind. Only recently I discovered your blog and finished reading at one go in two days. You have now inspired me to start my humble story, which I hope to build over a period of time. Thanks and pl do comment if I am going good....

  3. Hi
    Interesting writeups.. How do u plan to manage the birds problem in Bajra ? I believe you let the crop fully mature in the plant itself to get the best. Can we use Bajra stalks to feed cows/goats in dried form?
    Regards, Rams

  4. For now, we are planning to use it as green fodder. We may experiment with a small acreage and harvest the seeds.

  5. Never heard of drip irrigation as a "backup" to rainfed. Not surprising given the high capital cost of drip. You wouldn't recover even the interest in capital invested. Very bad idea. Flood irrigation in case of emergency would have sufficed since pumping capacity already exists.

  6. I know this is an older post but thank you for breaking this down so succinctly. There is so much information out there on the topic of grains and whether we "should" eat them, Bajra Cultivation