Is terrace building a cultivation method?

How does traditional rice cultivation work?

Rice cultivation has one millennia-old tradition. In some cases, people were growing rice more than 2000 years ago. In the north of the Philippines you can still get the famous rice terraces that were cultivated more than 2000 years ago were. Anyone who has ever seen this great landscape architecture will not soon forget these pictures. They are a testimony to the enormous art that people had already developed in ancient times in order to practice agriculture. Simply impressive, especially when you realize that all of these terraces had to be built by hand.

No rice cultivation without water supply

It does not matter whether rice is grown on the level or at the height of the rice terraces Rice plant is actually always in the water. The Water supply and water quality are therefore indispensable for growing rice.

In order to always have water available when it is needed in the context of rice cultivation, the farmers in the cultivation regions have cleverly devised Water management systems developed. Rainwater is often collected in higher fields or the necessary water is drawn off from rivers. The constant availability of water is important for smallholders. The water is then led to the rice fields via canals, tunnels and aqueducts. In addition to the Water supply it is also important that that water anytime from the fields drained can be. The rice plants should be dry three to four weeks before harvest at the latest.

The plowing was done with the water buffalo and today with the light tractor

Many of us know the beautiful and romantic-looking pictures in which rice farmers plow their fields with the help of water buffalo to prepare the seeds. By plowing the Fields torn up, plant remains and cattle manure are plowed under. Afterwards, the coarse chunks of earth are then turned into one with a harrow equal-grain earth crushed.

In the past, the farmers did this work with the help of water buffalo. Even today this is necessary in many cooperatives. However, the cooperatives try to jointly purchase light tractors that make work easier for the farmers. These small tractors work because of their light weight gentle on the soil and relieve the farmers of the time-consuming and exhausting work of field preparation. A very big and important step forward for the farmers.

Good seedlings are half the harvest!

While the men are traditionally often busy preparing the fields, the women grow the seedlings. The Seeds for the seedlings consists of the Grains of rice from the pre-harvest. Even before the main harvest begins, the women go through the fields and look for the best and healthiest grains of rice to use as seeds later.

These first-class rice grains, which are then used as seeds during the preparation period, must first Pre-soak in clean water and germinate easily. Then these sprouted grains of rice are put in special seed beds setin which they grow up protected.

If the Young plants then have reached a stable size, they are carefully plucked from the ground by the women and placed in the flooded rice fields with a distance of approx. 20 cm planted.

Five to six months to harvest

It takes time five to six months until the rice is ready to harvest is. Approx. The rice fields are drained three weeks before the start of the harvest. This means that the water is drained from the fields. The dry, golden yellow panicles are then harvested and dried in the sun. Only then does it begin Threshing the grains of rice. Traditionally, the farmers thresh their rice themselves. For this purpose, the panicles are cut on the ground or over wooden frames. Later the rice grains are thrown into the air in flat baskets so that the light chaff is carried away by the wind. Today, this tedious job is often done by machines. This saves the farmers time that they can invest in soil maintenance and the cultivation of changing crop rotations. This improves the soil quality of the cultivated rice fields sustainably. The rice plants are more resilient and the yield of the fields improves.

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