S U G A R C A N E

SugarCane (Saccharum officinarum)

SEASON AND VARIETIES
Sugarcane is grown chiefly in the main season (December - May) in the entire State. In parts of Tiruchirapalli, Perambalur, Karur, Salem, Namakkal and Coimbatore districts, it is also raised during the special season (June - September). The particulars in respect of each season are given below:

There are four main seasons in TN

India

Varieties

SOIL

PLANTING

Seed bed

Planting materials

Ideal cane sett

Preparation of setts

Seed rates & spacing

Method of planting
Flat Planting

Furrow Planting

Trench Method

Modified trench system

Special methods of establishment

Single bud direct planting

Transplanting technique (STP technique)

Partha" method

Measures to obtain higher germination

Manures and Fertilizers

Intercultivation

Irrigation

Weed control

Cultural operations

Earthing-Up

Wet earthing up

Hoeing

Detrashing

Propping

Lodging leads to several problems

To prevent lodging

Removal of water shoots

Control of flowering

Ratoon Management

Ratooning ability

Ratooning is common practice

Ratoon management

Maturity and harvest

Cropping systems

PLANT PROTECTION

PEST MANAGEMENT:

1. Shoot borer (Chilo infuscatellus)
Management:

Apply any one of the following insecticides:

Soil application

Spraying

2. Internode borer (Chilo sacchariphagus indicus)
Management:
- Release egg parasitoid, Trichogramma chilonis at the rate of 2.5 cc/release/ha. Six releases fifteen days interval starting from fourth month onwards will be necessary.
- During rainy weather and when ants are present, release the parasite through musquito net covered plastic disposable cups.
- Detrash the crop on the 150th and 210th day after planting.

3. Top shoot borer (Scirpophaga excerptalis)
Release Isotima javensis at 100 pairs/ha

4. Pyrilla (Pyrilla perpusilla)
Spray any one of the following on the 150th and 210th day (1000 l spray fluid):

- Detrash on the above days
- Avoid excess use of nitrogen.

5. Termite (Odontotermes obesus)

Flood irrigate the furrows to avoid termite attack in the furrows at the time of planting
Sett treatment:
Dip the setts in imidacloprid 70 WS 0.1% or Chlorpyriphos 20 EC 0.04 % for 5 min.
Soil application:
Apply lindane 1.3 D 125 kg/ha
Spray:
Imidacloprid 200 SL at 250 ml in 250 l of water / ha

6. Mealy bug (Saccharicoccus sacchari)
- Detrash as per schedule
- Drain excess water
- Apply any one of the following insecticides when theincidence is noticed spray on the stem only:

7. Scale insect (Melanaspis glomerata)
Spray dimethoate 0.06% on the 120th and 150th day after detrashing.

DISEASE MANAGEMENT

1. Red rot (Colletotrichum falcatum)

2. Sett rot (Ceratocytis paradoxa)

3. Smut (Ustilago scitaminea)

4. Grassy shoot disease (GSD)

5. Leaf spot (Cercospora longipes) : Spray Mancozeb 2.0 kg or Carbendazim 500 g/ha.

6. Rust (Puccinia erianthi) : Spray Tridemorph 1.0 litres or Mancozeb 2.0 kg/ha.

MAIN FIELD PREPARATION

PREPARATION OF THE FIELD

a) Wetland (Heavy soils): 
In wetlands, preparatory cultivation by ploughing the land and bringing the soil to fine tilth could not be done.
After harvest of the paddy crop, form irrigation and drainage channels of 40 cm depth and 30 cm width at intervals of 6 m across the field and along the field borders.
Form ridges and furrows with a spacing of 80 cm between rows with spade.
Stir the furrows with hand hoes and allow the soil to weather for 4 to 5 days.

b) Problem soils with excessive soil moisture:
In problem soils, with excessive moisture where it is difficult to drain water, form raised beds at 30 cm intervals with Length - 5 m, Width - 80 cm, and Height -15 cm.

c) Garden lands with medium and light soils:
In medium and light soil irrigated by flow or lift irrigation adopt the following:

2. Basal application of organic manures:
Apply FYM at 12.5 t/ha or compost 25 t/ha or filter press mud at 37.5 t/ha before the last ploughing under gardenland conditions. In wetlands this may be applied along the furrows and incorporated well.

Preparation of reinforced compost from sugarcane trash and pressmud:
Spread the sugarcane trash to a thickness of 15 cm over an area of 7 m x 3 m. Then apply pressmud over this trash to a thickness of 5 cm. Sprinkle the fertilizer mixture containing mussoorie rock phosphate, gypsum and urea in the ratio of 2:2:1 over these layers at the rate of 5 kg/100 kg of trash. Moist the trash and pressmud layers adequately with water. Repeat this process till the entire heap rises to a height of 1.5 m. Use cowdung slurry instead of water to moist the layer wherever it is available. Cover the heap with a layer of soil and pressmud at 1:1 ratio to a thickness of 15 cm. Leave the heap as such for three months for decomposition. Moist the heap once in 15 days. During rainy season, avoid moistening the heap. After three months, turn and mix the heap thoroughly and form a heap and leave it for one more month. Then turn and mix the heap thoroughly at the end of the fourth month. Moist the heap once in 15 days during 4th and 5th month also. This method increases the manurial value of trash compost by increasing, N, P and Ca content. It also brings down the C:N ratio by 10 times as compared to raw cane trash.

Composition of cane trash, pressmud and cane trash compost

Major nutrients
(Per cent)

Cane trash

Pressmud

Cane trash compost

Nitrogen (N)

0.40

1.90

1.60

Phosphorus (P)

0.13

1.50

1.10

Potassium(K)

0.40

0.50

0.40

Calcium (Ca)

0.56

3.00

1.00

Magnesium (Mg)

0.30

2.00

0.60

Sulphur (S)

0.12

0.50

0.48


Micronutrients
(ppm)

Cane trash

Pressmud

Cane trash compost

Iron (Fe)

360

2240

2710

Manganese (Mn)

110

400

450

Zinc (Zn)

90

360

370

Copper (Cu)

30

130

80

C:N ratio

113:1

16:1

22:1

3. Basal application of fertilizer
Test the soil and apply P fertilizer based on soil test values. Otherwise apply super phosphate (375 kg/ha) along the furrows and incorporate with hand hoe.

Management of main field operations

PREPARATION OF SETTS FOR PLANTING

SETT TREATMENT

SEED RATE

PLANTING

Improved technologies on cane planting systems
Mechanisation of planting

FILLING UP GAPS

TRASH MULCHING
Mulch the ridges uniformly with cane trash to a thickness of 10 cm within a week after planting. It helps to tide over drought, conserves moisture, reduce weed population and minimise shoot borer incidence. Mulch the field with trash after 21 days of planting in heavy soil and wetland conditions. Avoid trash mulching in areas where incidence of termites is noticed.

RAISING INTER CROPS
In areas of adequate irrigation, sow one row of soybean or blackgram or greengram along the centre of the ridge on the 3rd day of planting. Intercropping of daincha or sunhemp along ridges and incorporation of the same on the 45th day during partial earthing up helps to increase the soil fertility, and also the cane yield. Especially Intercropping of Co.1 Soybean gives an yield of 800 kg/ha without any adverse effect on cane yield.

WEED MANAGEMENT

WEED MANAGEMENT IN PURE CROP OF SUGARCANE

TOP DRESSING WITH FERTILIZERS

a. Soil application
Apply 275 kg of nitrogen and 112.5 kg of K2O/ha in three equal splits at 30, 60 and 90 days in coastal and flow irrigated belts (assured water supply areas). In the case of lift irrigation belt, apply 225 kg of nitrogen and 112.5 kg of K2O/ha in three equal splits at 30, 60 and 90 days (water scarcity areas). For jaggery areas, apply 175 kg of nitrogen and 112.5 kg of K2O/ha in three equal splits on 30, 60 and 90 days.

NITROGEN SAVING
a. Neem Cake Blended Urea: Apply 67.5 kg of N/ha + 27.5 kg of Neem Cake at 30 days and
repeat on 60th and 90th days.
Note: Neem cake blending: Powder the required quantity of neem cake and mix it with
urea thoroughly and keep it for 24 hours. Thus, 75 kg of nitrogen/ha can be saved by this method.
b. Azospirillum: Mix 12 packets (2400 g)/ha of Azospirillum inoculant or TNAU Biofert –1 with 25 kg of FYM and 25 kg soil and apply near the clumps on 30th day of planting. Repeat the same on 60th day with another 12 packets (2400 gm). Repeat the above on the other side of the crop row on the 90th day (for lift irrigated belt).
c. Band placement: Open deep furrows of 15 cm depth with hand hoes and place the fertilizers in the form of band and cover it properly.
d. Subsurface application: Application of 255 kg of Nitrogen in the form of urea along with potash at 15 cm depth by the side of the cane clump will result in the saving of 20 kg N/ha without any yield reduction.

NUTRITIONAL DISORDERS :
Nitrogen deficiency : All leaves of sugarcane exhibit a yellow – green colour and retardation of growth. Cane stalks are smaller in diameter and premature drying of older leaves. Roots attain a greater length but are smaller in diameter.
Phosphorus deficiency : Reduction in length of sugarcane stalks, diameters of which taper rapidly at growing points. The colour of the leaves is greenish blue, narrow and somewhat reduce length. Reduced tillering, decreased shoot / root ratio with restricted root development.
Potassium deficiency: Depressed growth, yellowing and marginal drying of older leaves and
development of slender stalks. An orange, yellow colour appears in the older lower leaves which develop numerous chlorotic spots that later become brown with dead centre. A reddish discoloration which is confined to the epidermal cells of the upper surfaces and midribs of the leaves. The young leaves appear to have developed from a common point giving a “Bunched top” appearance. Poor root growth with less member of root hairs.
Zinc deficiency: Mild zinc deficiency exhibit a tendency to develop anthrocyanin pigments in the leaves. Pronounced bleaching of the green colour along the major veins and also striped effect due to a loss of chlorophyll along the veins. In acute cases of zinc deficiency there is evidences of necrosis and growth ceases at the growing point (meristem).
Iron deficiency: Symptoms of Iron deficiency are generally seen in young leaves where pale stripes with scanty chlorophyll content occur between parallel lines. In advanced stages of deficiency the young leaves turn completely white, even in the veins. Root growth also becomes restricted.
Boron deficiency : Boron deficiency could be seen in the cane by depressed growth, development of distorted and chlorotic leaves and the presence of definite leaf and stalks lesions. In extreme cases of boron deficiency the plant will die.

Importance of Balanced Nutrition
The soil fertility has declined in many sugarcane growing areas of the state due to improper and some times, distorted fertilizer schedules adopted over the years under intensive cultivation of the crop. Hence balanced application of fertilizer based on soil test values and crop requirement is essential.

Micro nutrient fertilizers :
1.   (a) Zinc deficient soils : Basal application of 37.5 kg/ha of zinc sulphate.
     (b) Sugarcane crop with zinc deficiency symptoms: foliar spray of 0.5% zinc sulphate with 1% urea at 15 days internal till deficiency symptoms disappear.
2.   (a) Iron deficient soils: Basal application of 100 kg/ha of ferrous sulphate.
     (b) Sugarcane with Iron deficiency symptoms: foliar spray of 1% ferrous sulphate with 1% urea at 15 days interval till deficiency symptoms disappear.
3.   Common Micronutrient mixture : To provide all micronutrients to sugarcane, 50 kg /ha of micronutrient mixture containing 20 kg Ferrous sulphate,10 kg Manganese sulphate, 10 kg Zinc sulphate, 5 kg of Copper sulphate, 5 kg of Borax mixed with 100 kg of well decomposed FYM, can be recommended as soil application prior to planting.

Recommended dosage of macro and micronutrients
Macronutrients
a. Sugarcane – plant crop (meant for sugar mills)
     275 : 62.5 : 112.5 kg N, P2O5 and K2O per ha
b. Sugarcane – Ratoon crop (meant for sugar mills)
     275 + 25% extra N : 62.5 : 112.5 kg N, P2O5 and K2O per ha
c. Sugarcane for jaggery manufacture (plant as well as ratoon crop)
     225 : 62.5 : 112.5 kg N, P2O5 and K2O per ha

WATER MANAGEMENT
Irrigate the crop depending upon the need during different phases of the crop.

Germination phase (0 - 35 days):
Provide shallow wetting with 2 to 3 cm depth of water at shorter intervals especially for sandy soil for enhancing the germination. Sprinkler irrigation is the suitable method to satisfy the requirement, during initial stages.
Later, irrigation can be provided at 0.75, 0.75 and 0.50 IW/CPE ratio during tillering, grand growth and maturity phases respectively. The irrigation intervals in each phase are given below:

Days of irrigation interval

Stages

Sandy soil

Clay soil

Tillering phase (36 to 100 days)

8

10

Grand growth phase (101 - 270 days)

8

10

Maturity phase (271 - harvest)

10

14

DRIP IRRIGATION:

Concept of fertigation

Recommended N & K @ of 275 and 112.5 kg. ha-1 may be applied in 14 equal splits with 15 days interval from 15 DAP.

Advantages of Fertigation

Contingent plan
Gradual widening of furrow:
At the time of planting, form furrow at a width of 30 cm initially. After that, widen the furrow to 45 cm on 45th day during first light earthing up and subsequently deepen the furrow on 90th day to save 35% of water.

Drought Management:

PRE-HARVEST PRACTICES
a. Apply cane ripeners

b. Assessing maturity of crops

15. HARVESTING

B. RATOON CROP
MANAGEMENT OF THE FIELD AFTER HARVEST OF THE PLANT CROP
Complete the following operations within 10 days of harvest of plant crop to obtain better
establishment and uniform sprouting of shoots.

MANAGEMENT OF THE CROP

C. SHORT CROP (NURSERY CROP)
Selection Of Proper Planting Months For Raising Nursery Crop In Relation To Main Field Planting
Raise six to seven months old nursery crop prior to main field planting as follows:

Raise nursery crop during Main field planting

Precautions In Maintaining Nursery Crop
Adopt similar production techniques for raising short crop with the following modifications.