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Professional Training Workshop on "Irrigation Management for Improving Water Productivity of Rice"

Two days Professional Training Workshop on "Irrigation Management for Improving Water Productivity of Rice" by CEWRI Subcomponent of Rice PSDP project, under Prime Minister Agricultural Emergency Program from 15th to 16th September 2020

Rice is considered a high delta crop, which can also grow under standing water. Thus,majority of farmers in Pakistan use to grow rice in standing water, which helps in controlling the weeds. Similarly, the puddling of field under standing water softens the land, which facilitate in the traditional manual transplanting. However, all these practices causes excessive water losses and develops an impervious layer in the crop root zone, whichaffect the soil structure and fertility, thus negatively impact on the productivity of riceand the subsequent crop after rice.  Consequently, water productivity of rice is negatively affected through reduced yield and increased water input.Thus, the CEWRI subcomponent of rice PSDP project is working on developing improved water management technologies, which did not involvepuddling, save irrigation water, improve soil fertility and increase productivity of rice on sustainable basis. Research trials on dry seeded rice on wide and narrow beds in comparison with conventional transplanted rice on flat were established during the current rice season. Different surface irrigation methods includingfurrow, drip, alternate wetting and drying in comparison with conventional continuous flooding were established and currently being tested at CEWRI field station at NARC farm.

Group photo of training participants after the inaugural session at community centre of NARC

A two days (September 15 to 16, 2020) professional training workshop was conducted at NARC, as part of the capacity building and skill development activities of CWERI subcomponent, particularly aimed to enhance the skills of early career professionals engaged in the various subcomponents of rice PSDP project at NARC. Therefore, a total of 30 professionals mainly from different subcomponents of rice PSDP project working at NARC participated in the workshop. The workshop was comprised of power point presentations on crop water requirement, irrigation scheduling, irrigation performance evaluation, water measurement in agriculture, water management technologies for rice and design and management of solar water pumping systems on day 1.  Practical training on hand bydemonstrating different irrigation management systems, trouble shooting of different irrigation methods, measuring gravimetric and indirect sensor based soil water content, bulk density and infiltration rate determination were conducted at CEWRI field station on day 2.

    

Field practical measurements and training activities at CEWRI field station at NARC

Addressing the inaugural session as chief guest,EngrShamim-Ul-Sitain Shah, Director General NARC, appreciated the CEWRI team for taking the lead in skill development and hailed rice project researchers for the excellent financial and technical performance during the FY 2019-20. The PD rice project Dr Muhammad Yusuf showed his enthusiasm and lauded the CEWRI team for the excellent performance in achieving the targets as per timeline, despite the COVID 19 pandemic. The director CEWRI appreciated the CEWRI team and stressed the need for improved coordination among the various components of rice project. Dr Ghani Akbar PSO/P.I. of CEWRI subcomponent elaborated the water productivity and irrigation management issues for the rice crop and stressed the need for improved linkages and well-coordinated and integrated efforts of rice researchers for a meaningful project outcome. The participants expressed their satisfaction over the contents and knowledge sharing during the workshop. Certificates were distributed among the participants after successful completion of the workshop.

    

Rice crop on furrow irrigated wide beds and drip irrigated narrow bedsat CEWRI field station NARC

   

Inaugural session and certificate distribution among the participants at the end of the workshop

 

Dr Ghani Akbar
PSO/Program Leader –IWMP, CEWRI-NARC
P.I. CEWRI subcomponent of rice PSDP project