NCERT Class 8 Science Chapter 1 - Crop Production and Management Notes

Chapter 1 - Crop Production and Management Notes

1. Crop
When plants of same kind are grown and cultivated at one place on a large scale, it is called a crop.

2. Types of Crops
• Kharif Crop: The crops which are sown in rainy season are called kharif crops. Examples: paddy, maize, soyabean, groundnut, cotton etc.
• Rabi Crop: The crops grown in the winter season are called rabi crops. Examples: wheat, gram, pea, mustard, linseed etc.

3. Basic practices of crop production
• Preparation of Soil
• Sowing
• Adding manure and fertilizers
• Irrigation
• Protecting from weeds
• Harvesting
• Storage

4. Preparation of Soil
Preparation of soil is the first step in cultivating a crop for food production. It requires 3 steps, that are
i) Ploughing - The process of loosening and turning the soil is called ploughing for tilling). It is done with the help of a plough, hoe or a cultivator attached to bullocks or tractor.
ii) Levelling - The ploughed soil is quite loose so it is liable to be carried away by strong winds or washed away by rain water. Thus, the ploughed soil is levelled by pressing it with a wooden or an iron leveller so as to prevent soil erosion.
iii) Manuring - Manuring means adding manure to the soil. Sometimes, manure is added to the soil before ploughing. Addition of manure to soil before ploughing helps in proper mixing of manure with the soil. Manuring helps in better yield.

5. Sowing
The process of scattering or putting seeds into the ground is called sowing.
Before sowing good quality seeds are selected. Good quality seeds are clean and healthy, free from infection and diseases.

There are two methods of sowing seeds
• Sowing by hand
• Sowing with a seed drill

Sowing with a seed drill is considered better than sowing with hand because
→ The seeds are in regular rows
→ It saves time and labour.

6. Adding manures and fertilizers
Repeated growing of crops in the same field removes a lot of precious mineral elements, organic matter and other materials from the soil. The deficiency of plant nutrients and organic matters in the soil is made up of by adding manuring and fertilizers to the soil.

7. Differences between Manure and fertilizers
Manure
• Manure is the natural substance obtained by decomposition of cattle dung, human waste and plant residue.
• Manure can be prepared in fields.
• Manure provides a lot of humus to the soil.
• Manure is relatively less rich in plant nutrients.

Fertilizers
• A fertilizer is an inorganic salt.
• A fertilizer is prepared in factories.
• A fertilizer doesn't provide any humus to the soil.
• Fertilizers are very rich in plant nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium.

8. Irrigation
• All the crop plants need water for their growth. It is, therefore, necessary to supply water to the crop plants in the fields, periodically.
• The process of supplying water to crop plants in the fields is called irrigation.
• Irrigation requirements of crops depends upon the nature of the crop, nature of the soil and season.
• Sources of irrigation are rivers, canals, wells, tube-wells, dams (reservoirs), ponds and lakes.
• Traditional methods of irrigation are:
→ Moat (Pulley System)
→ Rahat (Lever System)
→ Dhekli
→ Chain Pump
• Modern methods of irrigation are:
→ Sprinkler System
→ Drip System

9. Removing the weeds (Weeding)
• The unwanted plants which grow along with a cultivated crop are called weeds.
• The process of removing weeds from a crop field is called weeding.
• The best time for the removal of weeds is before they produce flowers and seeds.
• The various methods of weeding are:
→ Removal of weeds by pulling them out with hand.
→ Removal of weeds by using a trowel.
→ Destroying the weeds by spraying special chemicals called weedicides.

10. Harvesting
The cutting and gathering of the matured food crop is called harvesting. It is done either by hand using a sickle or by a motorised machine called harvester.

11. Storage of Food grains
The practice or means keeping grain until it is sold or used is called storage. The large scale storage of food grains is done in gunny bags and in grain silos.

12. Crop Rotation
Crop rotation is the process of growing different types of crops in the same area in the growing seasons.

13. Animal husbandry
Animal husbandry refers to the care of livestock animals. Livestock animals include cows, horses, chickens, goats, pigs, or any animal that is raised for meat, wool, or another functional use.

14. Big pieces of rocks are called crumbs. These are broken with the help of plank. 

15. Agricultural Implements
• Plough - This is being used since ancient times for tilling the soil, adding fertilisers to the crop, removing the weeds and turning the soil. This is made of wood and is drawn by a pair of bulls or other animals (horses and camels). It contains a strong triangular iron strip called ploughshare. The main part of the plough is a long log of wood which is called a ploughshaft. There is a handle at one end of the shaft. The other end is attached to a beam which is placed on the bulls’ necks. One pair of bulls and a man can easily operate the plough.

• Hoe - It is a simple tool which is used for removing weeds and for loosening the soil. It has a long rod of wood or iron. A strong, broad and bent plate of iron is fixed to one of its ends and works like a blade. It is pulled by animals.

• Cultivator - Nowadays ploughing is done by tractor-driven cultivator. The use of cultivator saves labour and time.

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