Using new techniques for cultivating rice in Mondulkiri
Chork char village is a village far away from the district town. All villagers in this village are still using traditional techniques which make them spend more time, resources (rice seeds) and labor to grow rice. In the village, the average growing space for the rice is about one hectare per family. Mr. Bun Sophea is a farmer in this village. He has 8 children who are still studying at school. His family has 2 main works; they are growing rice to support the family’s consumption and collecting the resin from the forest as an earning income. Before he used the traditional technique to grow rice but had only low yields in comparison of resources and the size of the land. But in 2012, he tried to follow the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) technique on a small portion of his land. He wanted to compare both techniques.
He followed the techniques like how to select seeds, to grow fat seedlings, to transplant in 1 or 2 seedlings as well as the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) techniques. After he tried to practice some new techniques he got the following results:
With the traditional techniques
- Seedlings looked small and weak. More seeds were needed to sow (about 40kg to 50 kg is needed for an hectare of rice field) as well as more time to take care, pull out, and transplant at the rice field because they needed to transplant about 10 to 20 seedlings a clump of rice.
- The increased capacity of rice plant was slow and smaller.
- The cluster of rice was shorter, with less seeds.
With the new techniques (SRI and IPM)
- Seedlings looked big and strong. Less seeds were needed to sow (just 15 kg to 20 kg an hectare of rice field). Also he had to spend less time than with the traditional technique because it needs less labors to sow, pull out and transplant, as he transplanted only 1 or 2 seedlings a clump of rice.
- The increased capacity of rice plant was fast and bigger.
- The cluster of rice was longer with plenty of seeds.
After he had seen and compared the results, Mr. Bun Sophea was very happy, he decided and committed to the practice of this new technique for the next year.
By Mr. Meas Viphou, Project Manager at Mondulkiri province