Indian society has always been dependent on agriculture. 70% of our population entirely relies upon agriculture for their subsistence. People grow different crops in different seasons according to their climatic conditions. Due to climatic change, the climate patterns have been changing very rapidly. India is a country that is primarily dependent on the monsoon for its farming activities. Farmers are to incur huge losses, necessitating the need to devise some techniques that will help farmers in agricultural activities. Polyhouse farming is a step in this direction to make farming more profitable, cost-effective, and environment-friendly. Further in this article, we will look at the benefits of Polyhouse farming.
Did you know?
Polyhouse farming is a fantastic way to conserve water. Usage of drip irrigation in a polyhouse helps save a minimum of 40% of the water typically required.
What Is Polyhouse Farming?
With time, farming practices and methods have changed to make farming profitable. Polyhouse cultivation is an innovation of agriculture where farmers can carry on their farming activities in a suitable environment by controlling the factors responsible. This knowledgeable method helps shell farmers extract numerous benefits, which we will see further in this article.
People are showing keen interest in Polyhouse farming because it is more profitable, and its risks are very low compared to traditional open farming. Also, this is a method where farmers can go on growing crops for the whole year.
India is the second-largest populated country in the world after China, and it is expected to surpass the population of China in the year 2027. Feeding such a vast population is a challenge; it is important to grow crops all around the year to deal with this challenge.
Polyhouse farming is the answer to the above-given problem. Several steps have been taken, including the Polyhouse subsidy, to promote Polyhouse farming. Farmers have to pay very less money from their pockets by taking this subsidy. Several rural banks are also providing Polyhouse subsidies and loans. In short Polyhouse subsidy is monetary assistance given to the farmers to promote Polyhouse farming and to avert the farmers from huge losses associated with traditional open farming.
Polyhouse Farming benefits
These are the following benefits of using Polyhouse for crop cultivation -:
- In a Polyhouse, you can readily produce crops in an administered environment. It helps to get rid of the traditional open farming method.
- Farmers can grow crops all around the year, irrespective of the season.
- Pests, diseases and insects cannot damage the crop as they grow safely inside the polyhouse.
- Outside climate cannot affect plant growth.
- The high quality of the product is obtained using the Polyhouse farming method.
- There can be good sanitation inside a Polyhouse.
- The application of fertilisers is straightforward as it is controlled automatically through drip irrigation.
- Better drainage and air facility are available.
- There is an increase in production capacity as the cropping period is less.
- The total crop yield is high in a year as all kinds of crops are grown throughout the season.
- In Polyhouse farming, there is uniform plant growth throughout its life cycle with less transplanting shock.
- In Polyhouse cultivation, handling harvests, grading products, and transporting them is straightforward.
The above benefits of Polyhouse farming make it a unique, effective, sustainable and cost-saving means of agriculture.
Greenhouse vs Polyhouse
Cultivation of certain crops can be done safely inside the protected structures of both Polyhouse and Greenhouse. Glass is the main constituent in constructing the greenhouse. On the other hand, Polyhouse is prepared from polythene material. Therefore one can see the difference between greenhouse and polyhouse; and can make out that polyhouse is quite effective and beneficial in growing crops using new technology and eco-friendly ways.
Categories of Polyhouse Agriculture
Polyhouse farming can be categorised into 2 types based on the factors of environmental controls:
Natural Ventilation Polyhouse
Natural ventilation Polyhouse has natural ventilation and a fogger system to protect crops from pests, diseases and insects. The Polyhouse helps in saving the plants from difficult environmental conditions. These categories of polyhouses are cheap.
Environmentally Regulated Polyhouse
Polyhouse that are environmentally regulated is good in maintaining crops annually by maintaining those factors essential in farming, for example, humidity, temperature etc.
There are 3 categories of polyhouse that are environmentally regulated.
- Lower technology Polyhouse: Cost-effective materials are needed to construct such Polyhouses. Readily available materials are taken into use. It protects the crops from jarring cold climatic situations, and shade nets are used to keep factors such as humidity and temperature under check.
- Medium technology Polyhouses: Galvanised iron is used in its construction. Temperature and humidity are maintained. All these polyhouses are mostly used during the summer season.
- High-technology Polyhouse system: Machine based controlling systems maintain the temperature inside these Polyhouses. In addition, humidity and irrigation for growing crops are also taken care of throughout the year using this system.
Polyhouse Farming Cost and Polyhouse subsidy
The cost of constructing a Polyhouse depends upon a few parameters: (a) type of system and (b) construction area.
A healthy estimate for Polyhouse construction would be the following:
1. Low technology Polyhouse without draining fans system or cooling pads - 400 to 500 sq meters.
2. Medium technology Polyhouse with cooling pads and draining fans systems which would not be automated - 900 to 1,200 sq meter.
3. High-technology Polyhouse with a completely automated control system - 2,500 to 4,000 sq meters.
Polyhouse farming costs:
- Invariable cost: Land, office rooms, labour rooms, and other fixed units like sprinkler or drip irrigation systems in farming.
- Recurring/Variable costs: Manures, fertiliser, pest and disease control chemicals, planting materials, electricity, and transportation charges come under the variable cost of a polyhouse farming setup.
To avoid the harsh climatic conditions, which do not allow the growing of certain profitable crops in all seasons resulting in economic loss for the farmers, Polyhouse farming has evolved. To promote Polyhouse farming, the government provides Polyhouse subsidies to the farmers, which makes their out-of-pocket expenditure very low to switch to Polyhouse farming. Polyhouse farming is a revolutionary idea that resembles the green revolution in increasing the productivity and profitability of the farmers. Crops can be grown in all seasons to feed the world's second-largest population. In Polyhouse farming, crops are grown in a protected space that saves crops from exposure to insects, diseases, and harsh climatic conditions.
The benefits and advantages of Polyhouse farming are so immense that farmers are quickly adopting this practice and earning a lot of profit. It should be adopted by the rest of the farmers so that the benefits of Polyhouse farming reach every farmer. Therefore, Polyhouse farming can be seen as a new world technology wherein farmers benefit from the cost of construction of crops and, therefore, increase their crop production.
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