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Farmers are urged to use technology and several seed types to combat El Nino

Farmers are being urged by the Department of Agriculture-Philippine Rice Research Institute (DA-PhilRice) to plant drought-tolerant cultivars and employ tools that would make it easier for them to deal with the effects of the El Nino phenomenon.

According to Elmer Alosnos, senior science research specialist at DA-PhilRice, rice producers need to be ready to plant early-maturing, drought-resistant cultivars in order to lessen the effects of an extended dry period.

“Pumili dapat ang ating mga magsasaka ng varieties na angkop sa kalagayan ng kanilang bukid at panahon ng pagtatanim,” the speaker said. At the same time that the rice fields are being prepared for planting, our farmers must choose types that are suitable for the state of the rice fields and the current planting season. We are encouraging our farmers to choose varieties that are drought-resistant and those that are what we called early maturing kinds) for those that may encounter extreme drought, Alosnos stated in a radio interview.

Several early-maturing varieties, including PSB Rc10 (Pagsanjan), NSIC Rc130 (Tubigan 3), NSIC Rc152 (Tubigan 10), NSIC Rc134 (Tubigan 4) and NSIC Rc160 (Tubigan 14), may be planted in irrigated lowland, according to him.

He suggested that farmers use PSB Rc14 (Rio Grande) and PSB Rc68 (Sacobia) for rainfed lowlands.

Among the uplands’ drought-tolerant cultivars, according to him, are PSB Rc80 (Pasig), PSB Rc9 (Apo), and NSIC Rc23 (Katihan 1).

Alosnos claimed that in addition to using rice types resistant to drought, there are technological solutions available to farmers to help them deal with El Nino’s consequences.

He said that they advise the alternate wetting and drying (AWD) and low-cost drip irrigation system (LDIS) for water-saving technology.

This is a low-cost method of constructing a well for observation that is made of bamboo or PVC pipe. Walang ito masamang dulot na epekto gaya ng pagbaba sa ani at hindi kailangan na laging babad sa tubig ang ating mga palay kagaya ng ating nakasanayan sa pamamaraan na ito. (Using an observation well made of PVC pipe or bamboo is a low-cost method of irrigating the rice fields. Through this, unlike current approach, palay won’t need to soak in water constantly, and there won’t be any negative effects like a drop in yield),” he continued.

According to him, farmers in irrigated areas can also utilize regulated irrigation to minimize water use by roughly 16–35% without lowering production.

“There are several technologies that can be applied to the current crop of magsasaka. There are still many technologies that can be taught to our farmers. Pwedeng makipag-ugnayan ang ating mga magsasaka sa Department of Agriculture at PhilRice for detail and sasanay. For more information and training, they can collaborate with the Department of Agriculture and PhilRice, according to Alosnos.

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This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute endorsement of any specific technologies or methodologies and financial advice or endorsement of any specific products or services.

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