Happy seeder technology provides an alternate to burning for managing rice loose straw after combine harvest

Mahesh K. Gathala, H.. Pathak, J.K. Ladha, Vivak Kumar, Deepika Mishra, John Blackwell, Crisian Roth, Virender Kumar, Vipin Kumar, Sheetal Sharma

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperConference paperpeer-review


The rice-wheat system of the Indo-Gangetic Plains, occupying 13.5 M ha, is critical for food security in the region. Productivity of rice and wheat has recently stagnated and declined owing to climate change and reduced soil productivity, posing a serious threat to the sustainability of the rice-wheat cropping system (Ladha et al. 2009). Hence the major challenge is to increase the productivity to meet the growing food demand without adverse environmental impact. Combine harvesters have recently been introduced, with exponential growth in mechanical harvesting of wheat in the better endowed rice-wheat growing area of NW India especially, Punjab, Haryana and western Uttar Paradesh. In these combine harvested areas, managing heavy loads of rice residues is the major issue. Farmers generally burn rice residue prior to wheat sowing as the cheap and easy option for residue management, but burning leads to losses of soil organic matter and nutrients (especially N, P, K, S and C), and creates environmental pollution (particulates and greenhouse gases) (Singh et al. 2007). The Happy Seeder technology provides an alternative to burning for managing rice residues and allows direct drilling of wheat in standing as well as loose residues (Gathala et al. 2009). Both on-farm and on-station trials were conducted to evaluate the feasibility of direct-drilling of wheat in the presence of heavy loads of rice residue using the Happy Seeder and the effects of tillage and residue management methods on crop productivity and soil physical properties.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIV World Congress on Conservation Agriculture
Subtitle of host publicationinnovations for improving efficiency, equity and environment
EditorsP.K. Joshi
Place of PublicationIndia
PublisherIndian Council of Agricultural Research and National Academy of Agricultural Sciences
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2009
EventWorld Congress on Conservation Agriculture (WCCA) - New Dehli, India, India
Duration: 04 Feb 200907 Feb 2009


ConferenceWorld Congress on Conservation Agriculture (WCCA)


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