AGRICULTURE AND IRRIGATION
The area under onion (kanda) has shown an increase from 310.394 hectares (767 acres) in 1952-53 to 373.525 hectares (923 acres) in 1961-62. Its cultivation is mainly concentrated in Dhulia, Sindkheda,
Taloda and Nandurbar talukas. In 1947-48 the crop was grown on 157.827 hectares
(390 acres) in the district. Onion is produced
in both the seasons, kharif as well as rabi. Its kharif season lasts for four months from August to November, while the rabi season starts from November and ends in February. The crop in the district is usually grown on well drained medium black or clayey loam soils. One deep ploughing and two to three harrowings are rcqured. The cultivation of onions is for two purposes, viz., the cultivation for the bulbs and that for the seeds. However the largest bulk of the cultivation is for the bulbs.
The seeds are sown on a raised seed bed in October-November. The seedlings get ready for being transplanted within four to five weeks. Irrigation is given just prior to transplanting. The seedlings are transplanted at a distance of 152.4 mm. X 101.6 mm. (6" X 4") in kharif season and that in rabi season at a distance of 127.0 mm. X 76.2 mm. (5" X 3"). Beds of the size of about 3.048 m. X 3.048 m. (10' X 10') or 3. 658 m. X 4.877 m. (12' X 16') are laid for irrigation purpose. About twenty to thirty cart loads of farm yard manure are applied. In addition, half of the quantity of a mixture of 136.078 kg. (300 lbs.) of ammonium sulphate and 90.718 kg. (200 lbs.) of superphosphate is applied as top dressing at the time of planting and the remaining after about two months. The bulbs are ready for uprooting in about three months from transplanting and the seed is ready for harvesting in about 3½ to 4 months. The young leaves (path) as well as the bulbs are widely used as vegetables. The rotational crops taken after onions include wheat, jowar, bajri, groundnut and chillis.
The area under sweet-potato (ratali) has gone down frofn 321.725 hectares (795 acres) in 1952-53 to 116.549 hectares (288 acres) in 1961-62. The crop is mainly grown in Dhulia, Sindkheda, Nandurbar and Sakri talukas. It is taken in both the seasons, kharif (July-September), and rabi (October-March). In the district, sweet-potato is produced on well drained, medium black soil. Its cultiva-tion comprises one deep ploughing, two or three harrowings and weeding. The land is made into ridges and furrows. The crop is propagated by cuttings with three nodes from the vines of the previous year on the sides of ridges, about a foot apart. About 10 to 15 cart loads of farm yard manure are applied, and 45.359 to 113.398 kg. (100 to 250 lbs.) of oil cake are also applied. Manures are applied at the time of planting and after four weeks from planting. The crop comes to maturity in 5 to 5½ months. There are two varieties of the crop, red and white. The tubers are used as a food for human beings and the vines are fed to cattle.
Among the green vegetables bhendi and brinjal (vange) are more important. Brinjal is grown in kharif, rabi and summer seasons. The
bhendi crop is also produced in kharif and summer seasons. Brinjal and bhendi occupied 161.874 and 240.788 hectares (400 and 595 acres), respectively in 1961-62. The area under both the crops increased from 151.757 and 169.159 hectares (.375 and 418 acres) in 1952-53 to 161.874 and 240.788 hectares (400 and 595 acres) in 1961-62. Both the crops can be grown on well drained medium black soil. Brinjal gets ready for harvesting after about three months and the harvesting continues for about three months. The seedlings of brinjal are grown on beds and then transplanted after five weeks. Irrigation is given. In the case of lady's finger (bhendi) the seed is either drilled or dibbled at a distance of about one and a half let t. Harvesting of tender fruits of bhendi is done two months after sowing. The number of pickings is usually 8 to 10 at an interval of about a week.
Radish (mula) and musk melon (kharbuj) arc grown on a very small scale. They together occupied an area of 89.436 hectares (221 acres) in 1961-62. Of these radish was grown in 4.452 hectare (11 acres) only.