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Azolla Benefits for Paddy Cultivation:

We know Azolla is a smart feed for livestock reminiscent of poultry, pigs, dairy, fish, goat, and sheep. However, lately, allow us to discuss Azolla Benefits and its position as biofertilizer in paddy cultivation which after all results in reduced cultivation value of rice, and larger yield of paddy.

Introduction of Azolla in Paddy fields:

In fresh years using biofertilizers in is gaining importance. In this facet, attracted the eye of agricultural scientists. The importance of Azolla as natural manure in rice was once first demonstrated in North Vietnam in the yr 1957 and subsequently introduced in U.S.A, Indonesia, Japan, Philippines, China, and India. The potential of Azolla as a green manure crop for rice has since been stressed out. Azolla is a genus of water fern that assimilates nitrogen in affiliation with a nitrogen-fixing blue-green alga Anabaena Azolla that lives symbiotically in the cavities of the higher leaf lobes of Azolla.

Azolla will also be grown abundantly in N-deficient medium additionally on account of the infixing job of the endo-cyanophyte Anabaena azollae. Biological nitrogen fixation thru Azolla Anabaena advanced is a possible organic device for expanding rice yields, at relatively low price. Azolla possesses the specified qualities of a green manure crop, like quick expansion, large biomass production, upper nitrogen content material and simple decomposability in the soil. It has been further demonstrated that Azolla is a good source of potassium when implemented to soils.

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However, Azolla cultivation is a labor-intensive generation and it’s, therefore, appropriate for adoption in places the place farm hard work is reasonably priced. The major constraints in the usage of Azolla fertilization to rice are moisture, temperature stress, P standing within the soil, salinity, pests, and illnesses. Since water is a pre-requisite for the growth of Azolla, it may be grown in higher rainfall spaces the place water is good enough and as such, it is not suitable underneath dryland conditions.

Suitable climate to develop Azolla:

Azolla is reported to develop and multiply smartly from July to February in India however dies impulsively at upper temperature. In many agro-climatic areas of India, repairs of Azolla is a major problem as a result of top temperatures. Hence, it can be crucial to display screen and make a choice an appropriate Azolla pressure which is temperature tolerant and adaptable to explicit climatic condition. This is of the paramount importance of introducing Azolla bio-fertilizer generation in rice production. Under much less favorable prerequisites, application of P fertilizer is vital to produce Azolla biomass. If P deficient conditions happen, the expansion of Azolla will stop. Since many of the rice soils are deficient in P, it will be significant to apply P for Azolla and is considered as a pricey enter. Thus, inexpensive sources of supplying the required P have to be investigated. Salinity is a major problem confronting rice cultivation in several portions of India. Therefore, salt-tolerant Azolla species are to be identified, that can be utilized as inexperienced manure in saline soils.

The recommended effect of Azolla as inexperienced manure has been well documented. There are just a limited number of studies at the decomposition and availability to rice of nitrogen fixed by means of Azolla. For the efficient use of Azolla, it is important to learn about the destiny of Azolla nitrogen and its availability to the rice plant. With the expanding cost of fertilizer, the price of this input in rice cultivation is turning into prohibitive as fertilizers alone are reported to cost 40 to 50 p.c of the whole input. In order to lower the price of fertilizer, natural fertilizers like Azolla may also be substituted for chemical fertilizers. Use of natural fertilizer mobilizes reasonable sources for productive goal replacing high-cost chemical fertilizers. Azolla, which has attracted the attention of biological three scientists, because the past three many years is thought of as to have a high attainable for changing inorganic N fertilizers as a result of it could actually fix N from the atmosphere. Besides expanding the organic carbon content material and N availability in soil, Azolla is a superb source of other nutrients and possess the opposite agronomic qualities associated with the other green manure vegetation. The financial possible of Azolla could also be reported to be considerable. The financial go back because of the adoption of bio-fertilizer technology, in relation to saving on the price of chemical fertilizer and weedicides is all the time greater than 10 percent supplied the environmental stipulations for enlargement and multiplication of Azolla are correctly met.

Therefore, once Azolla is presented right into a rice box, it might probably maintain and act as a renewable biofertilizer. Principally there are two strategies of using Azolla, as dual cropping and rising in the nursery and the use of prior to transplanting. An build up in paddy yields, due to inoculation of Azolla has been reported via a number of investigators in India and abroad

How Does it work:

Azolla is a genus of clean small aquatic ferns which might be native to Asia, Africa, and the Americas, Three Azolla species are local to portions of the United States, They reside naturally in lakes, swamps, streams, and different our bodies of water, Some have been unfold by way of man or herbal means to various parts of the world. Some are strictly tropical or subtropical in nature, whilst others grow and thrive in either temperate or tropical climates. Azolla has been of interest to botanists and agriculturists for years on account of its symbiotic dating with a nitrogen-fixing, blue-green alga, Anabaena

What Are the Benefits of Using Azolla?

Azolla as a Nitrogen Fertilizer for expanding Crop Yields:

Azolla plants are described through the Chinese and Vietnamese as being miniature nitrogen fertilizer factories. The Vietnamese use them as nitrogen fertilizer since Azolla endured to supply nitrogen fertilizer for Vietnamese rice paddies. The nitrogen fertilizer mounted by way of Azolla turns into to be had to the rice after the Azolla mat is included into the soil and its nitrogen starts to be released through decomposition. For Azolla, it takes 25 to 35 days to supply enough nitrogen for a four to six ton/ha rice crop right through the wet season, or a five to eight ton/ha crop underneath irrigation all over the dry season.

Maintaining Soil Fertility:

 As a inexperienced manure, Azolla’s affect on soil fertility is because of its natural subject and nitrogen. Incorporation and decomposition of Azolla will shape a humus compound. Humus will increase the water keeping capability of soil and promotes aeration, drainage, and the aggregation crucial for extremely productive soils, Organic matter can bind together soil debris and makes clayey soils extra friable. Apart from its influence on soil physical homes, Azolla is vital within the biking of vitamins, whilst Azolla is rising in the paddy, it fixes nitrogen and absorbs vitamins out of the water that might in a different way be washed away. When the Azolla is composed with the soil and humus is shaped, and these nutrients are slowly launched into the soil as decomposition progresses.

Controlling the Growth of Aquatic Weeds:

Agricultural economists have calculated that the Asian farmers, particularly women, pay longer time on weeding than on another activity required for rice manufacturing. Although analysis is inadequate, it’s frequently believed that Azolla suppresses the expansion of certain aquatic weeds. Weed enlargement is suppressed as soon as Azolla forms a thick, light-proof mat. There are mainly two mechanisms for this suppression, the most effective mechanism is the light-starvation of young weed seedlings by way of the blockage of daylight. And the opposite is the bodily resistance to weed seedling is exposed in a heavy, interlocking Azolla mat. In the case of weed-infested rice fields, the benefit from Azolla weed suppression may also surpass its get advantages as a nitrogen supply. Rice seedlings aren’t affected by Azolla’s weed suppression impact as a result of, when transplanted, they stand above the Azolla mat.

How Azolla Is Used as a Green Manure:

Azolla can be utilized as a inexperienced manure by way of growing it as a monocrop after which incorporating it as a basal manure earlier than the rice is transplanted; or transported to any other website for use on upland plants; growing it as an intercrop and incorporating it as a most sensible dressing manure after the rice is transplanted; or by way of rising it both as a monocrop and an intercrop. All those programs may also be a hit, however, and is not unusual in agriculture, use of the green manure crop requires some changes in the control of both the golf green manure and the main crop. Monocrop Azolla is used in China and Vietnam all the way through the iciness and spring to produce nitrogen for the spring rice crop. The identical methodology is used to provide nitrogen for the early summer season rice crop, but that is much less not unusual for the reason that growth of Azolla pinnata is affected by top temperature and heavy pest attack during mid to late summer. Intercropped Azolla is most often grown with the rice in places the place there is no time available within the cropping gadget for the monocropping of Azolla. Azolla as an intercrop Azolla shall be to start with presented via hand or rotary rice weeder and then later killed by way of heavy shading and/or top temperatures, along side next decomposition and free up of nitrogen to the crop, which maximizes the grain production.

Environmental Requirements For Azolla:

The ecology of Azolla in nature is still obscure. The gross environmental requirements of Azolla are so interrelated that it is often tough to single out anybody or a mixture of things:

Moisture:

Moisture is the elemental requirement for an prevalence of Azolla. At a relative humidity of lower than 60 %, Azolla turns into dry and fragile and whole drying kills the fern. Although Azolla can grow on wet dust surfaces or wet peat clutter, it prefers to develop in a free-floating state on the water surface. In shallow water, Azolla plant may touch the soil surface with its roots, but it will probably additionally develop in a lot deeper water where nutrients are absorbed completely from the aquatic surroundings whilst being afloat.

Light:

Like all green vegetation, Azolla requires light for photosynthesis and production of natural carbon skeletons wanted for mobile synthesis. The acetylene aid activity (ARAof Azolla is significantly reduced when light intensities of 80,000 – 90,000 lx are reached at noon. The enlargement fee increases with expanding mild depth.

A temperature for Growth of Azolla: From traditional agricultural practices with Azolla, where it’s grown as green manure in rice fields, probably the most favorable length for vegetative growth of Azolla used to be found to be August to February, all the way through which era the mean day by day temperature round 16° – 17°C. For optimum expansion, A. caroliniana and A. Filiculoides favor a lower temperature range of five° – 20°c. Although Azolla pinnata is widely dispensed within the tropics, it grows better handiest in cooler seasons. In India, Azolla pinnata grew smartly from July to December nevertheless it disappeared from the ponds in hot summer months (April – June In southern parts of China, Azolla grows most abundantly from February to May. In India, to be an ordinary iciness annual plant. Its expansion in ponds started from July and reached a top most in November – December. From April to June, Azolla was once completely absent. Thus, Azolla grows over a wide range of temperatures of 14° to 40°c. However, the optimum temperature for growth is round 20°-30°c.

Effect of pH:

The optimum pH vary of Azolla is quite at the acidic aspect of 0.5 – 7.0. Maximum growth and biomass production are conceivable at pH 6.5, pH 5.five was optimal for the growth of Azolla.

How Azolla Increases Yield of Paddy

For growing paddy crop, lower than five% of the nitrogen delivered through Azolla instantly. The remaining 95% nitrogen remains in the Azolla’s biomass will likely be utilized until the plants die. Once the Azolla plant decomposes, its organic nitrogen will be mineralized and launched as ammonia, which is instantly available as a biofertilizer for the growing rice crops.

There are methods to be had to maximize Azolla’s nitrogen fertilization, with the result that Azolla now has huge potential to increase rice production international.

When you cultivate paddy with the chemical fertilizers, we spend roughly Rs.1,500 in keeping with acre. And with Azolla, the price of cultivation can come all the way down to 25%. Azolla can building up the paddy yield by means of 30-40%.

Farmers can create their own nursery for rising this fern. The box for growing Azolla will have to be ploughed, levelled, irrigated, and we should shape small ponds. And it wishes 15-20 cm of status water within the fields. And the farmer may want green Azolla on the rate of 20 kg in keeping with hectare, and it should be mixed with contemporary cow dung after which released into the pond.

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