Hill Agriculture
Principal Crops
Improved Systems
Economy of Crops
Holistic Farming
Income Comparison
1 Holistic Farming
2 Organic Farming
3 Nutrient Manag.
4 Pest Manag.
5 Hybrid Seeds
6 Hi-Tech Practices
7 Irrigation
8 Innovations
9 Marketing
10 Locations
11 Extensions
12 Investments
Concluding Remarks
Experiments in Hill Agriculture

by D.S. Thakur
Professor of Agricultural Economics
Regional Research Station, Bajaura

Many myths surround hills. As such, hills mean many things to many people. It is only in recent times that people have started to explore, understand and realise the immense potential and benefits of hills for the hill people and the country at large.

Hills have certain advantages over plains. They have vast wealth of natural resources - natural vegetation, fertile soil, forests, pastures, lakes, and snow-clad mountain peaks. Hills are also the sources of perennial life-giving waters to the plains.

All these resources must be properly utilised and harnessed for faster development of hills and hill people. Hills also have a comparative advantage over plains for production of off-season vegetables, vegetable seeds, temperate and tropical fruits, medicinal plants and other high value crops.

Himachal Pradesh has given a new concept of development of hills and agricultural economy by scientific transformation and modernisation of agriculture. Therefore, Himachal Pradesh is considered as a model for the development of hills with the pertinent lessons for other areas and states. Himachal's progress in hill agriculture is an eye-opener to the vast development potential of the hilly region in the country.

Agriculture to go hi-tech in the twenty-first century for significant increase in output and income of farmers to ensure food security. The hi-tech agriculture is composed of significant advances in agriculture, combining:

  • advanced package of practices
  • latest appropriate farm machinery and implements
  • the green house technology
  • watershed management technology
  • the latest outcomes of biodiversity
  • biotechnology
  • land use mapping
  • remote sensing
  • land and water use
  • conservation and management
  • organic farming system (OFS)
  • integrated nutrient supply system
  • pest management system
  • improved cropping systems
  • integrated intensive holistic farming systems
  • improved irrigation systems
  • improved extension systems
  • agricultural marketing systems

as provided to some 100 samples of demonstration farmers of Himachal Pradesh selected in all the 12 districts during the course of this study for the last seven years. These aspects have been discussed later under the strategy for the long-run sustainability of farming. It may be noted that the strategy has already worked wonders. The data furnished in the tables given present seven-years averages.


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