Methods of Organic Farming
Organic farming is a practice of cultivation of crops that involves various methods that are eco friendly and environmental friendly in nature. In this method, the use of inorganic products such as chemical fertilizers, insecticides, herbicides, fungicides and pesticides are done. At present organic farming is being practiced across the world in a large scale covering 32.2 million hectares of land around the world. The governing body namely The International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) has been created to take care of the issues related to setting standards and regulation of organic farming activities worldwide.
The methods used in organic farming are basically aimed at improving the productivity of various crops with the integration and successful implementation of biological tools and techniques to carry out Sustainable Agriculture without using any kind of synthetic material.
Organic farming mainly implements the process of polyculture instead of monoculture as used in the traditional farming system. In the process of monoculture practiced earlier, a single crop is being cultivated on a piece of land every time. This process was practiced in order to save the cost of fertilizers, seeds and pesticides but was not good for long run as its has various side effects including reduction of fertility, and soil erosion.
The concept of polyculture is entirely different as it advocates the cultivation of different types of crops on a single piece of land and thus helps to attract various soil microbes useful for the soil, making it more fertile. In addition to that, some crops also act as pest repellents and thus help in pest control naturally.
In case of organic farming composts are used to enhance the fertility of the soil. These composts are purely eco friendly and biological in nature. The most commonly used compost in organic farming is the vermi compost made with the help of various species of worms. In addition to that, composts are also made with the help of manure, humus, micro organism, urine etc,. Moreover, green manures are also used to increase the fertility of the soil in case of organic farming.
Control of pest is the most essential and important part of any cultivation process. In case of organic farming pest control is done by biological means without using synthetic chemicals, pesticides and insecticides. In organic farming, the useful insects are attraction by planting the favorable plants that attract them. These insects are predators that control the harmful insects. Also, the verities of species that are disease resistant are planted in order to keep the plant disease free. This avoids the cost incurred in purchasing costly pesticides and fertilizers.
In addition to that, a specific type of crop called the companion crops are grown along with the main crops in organic farming. These companion crops divert or discourage the growth of harmful pests. Moreover, neem extracts can also be used as a biological pesticide. The process of crop rotation is also effective in disturbing the reproduction cycles of pests and thus protects the crops from pests.
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