Kharif crops : Sorghum and Pearl millet (most usable crop)

Sorghum : fourth most usable Kharif crops

Botanical Name of this Kharif crops-

Sorghum: A Kharif crops
Sorghum crops

Sorghum bicolor L.

Other Name-

Juar = Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi

Jola = Kannada

Cholam = Malayalam, Tamil

Jwari = Marathi

Janha = Oriya

Jonnalu  = Telugu

Origin of Sorghum Kharif crops –

According to Warth (1937) Sorghum is the kharif crops that was originated in India and Africa.

According to De Candolle sorghum is the kharif crops that was originated in Africa.

Geographical Distribution-

Sorghum ; A Kharif crops
Sorghum crops

Sorghum is the Kharif crop that grown over all parts of the world except North east of Europe region. Rainfall of 400 to 1000 mm is required for Better growth of Sorghum.

Among the world; Nigeria, Sudan in Africa is the region where sorghum is cultivated widely. Australia, USA, and other Asian country also cultivated and grow Sorghum.

In India, Mainly Peninsular and central States cultivated Sorghum crops widely, Such as –  Maharashtra, Karnataka, MP, AP, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat.

Economic Importance –

A Kharif crops
Sorghum Plant

Sorghum is one of the most usable cereal Kharif crop that are mostly grown in Africa, Asia and Central America continent.  Sorghum crop is the world’s fifth largest grain crop after Rice, wheat, Maize.

As we know that India has mainly Four climatic region i.e., Arid, Semi-Arid, Tropical and Sub-Tropical. And Sorghum crop is mostly grown in semi-arid or sub-tropical regions. Because of its resistance to harsh weather conditions, Sorghum crop is cultivated better in semi-arid or sub-tropical regions. Sorghum crop is known as a high-energy and also drought tolerant crop.

In many country, Sorghum is used as Human feed but In some country, Sorghum is used for livestock feed. For example – In the USA, North America, Brazil and Australia; sorghum crop is primarily used as livestock feed.

And it’s Stem, Branches, leaves and foliage are used for green chop, hay, silage, and pasture.

Cultural Practices –


CO 26, CO (S) 28, CO (S) 30, BSR 1, COH 4, K tall, K 11, Paiyur 1, Paiyur 2 and APK 1, etc.

Selection of seeds-

Good quality seeds are sown and that are collected from disease-free  and pest-free fields.

Seed rate-

In Irrigated condition

Transplanted – 7.5 kg/ha;   Direct sown – 10 kg/ha

In Rainfed condition

Direct sown – 15 kg/ha

Field Preparation

Ploughing = Plough the field with an iron plough once (or) twice.

Uses of FYM on this Kharif crops = Spread 12.5 t/ha FYM or composted coir pith on the unploughed field with

  • 10 packets of Azospirillum (2000g/ha)
  • 10 packets (2000 g/ha) of phosphobacteria
  • 20 packets of Azophos (4000g/ha)

Also Supply well decomposed poultry manure @ 5 t/ha (It improves the yield of crops as well as physical and Biological properties of soils)

Application of fertilizers

Transplanted Kharif crop-

  • Supply NPK fertilizers as per soil test recommendations.
  • If soil test recommendations are not available, Use 90 N, 45 P2O5, 45 K2O kg/ha.
  • Apply N @ 50:25:25% at basal, 15 and 30 DAS and full dose of P2O5 and K2O basally before planting.

Direct sown crop-

  • Supply fertilizer as above recommendation.
  • Supply fertilizer mixture in two lines in which sorghum is to be raised and cover upto 2 cm.
  • When Azospirillum is used, supply only 75% of recommended N for irrigated sorghum.

Sowing Method

Sowing depth = 3 to 5 cm.

Sowing Space

  • 15 cm between two plants.
  • 45 cm between two rows.


If the crops become hard and firm. At this stage, harvest the crop by cutting them separately. Cut the straw after one week.



Pearl millet: Another Kharif crops

Botanical Name

Pearl Millet; A Kharif crops
Pearl Millet

Pennisetum glaucum

Origin of Pearl Millet


Geographical Distribution

  • Pearl millet is a crop that is cultivated all over the world in approx. 22.0 million ha of land. Pearl millet is cultivated and used as fodder for Cattle in many countries such as USA, South America, Canada, Japan, and Australia and so on.
  • In India, Pearl millet is cultivated in all states. But Predominantly cultivated in Rajasthan. In India, Pearl millet is cultivated in approx 15 to 20 million ha.

Economic Importance

  • Pearl millet ( Pennisetum glaucum ) is Mineral rich cereal.
  • Pearl millet is also Protein rich (10.5 to 14.5).
  • They have biological value similar to wheat & rice
  • Human used Pearl millet as staple food.
  • Pearl millet is also used as Fodder for cattle.
  • Pearl millet is also cultivated as pasture crop.

Cultural Practices

  • Climate-
    Pearl Millet
    Pearl Millet
  1. Pearl millet is better cultivated in Rainfall of 400-750mm.
  2. Pearl millet is Mostly grow in Arid & Semi-Arid regions.
  3. For vegetative growth of Pearl millet, moist weather & medium RF.
  4. Optimum Temp for vegetative growth of Pearl millet is 28 to 32º C.
  5. Rainfall during flowering & grain formation– poor grain setting.
  6. Rain at grain maturity – ergot disease due to high humidity & low temp
  • Soil- The following soils are required for The Optimum growth for Pearl millet are-
  1. Loamy sands to loams soil
  2. well drained soil,
  3. non saline and non-alkaline are more suitable.


  • Seed Rate = 4-5 kg if sown behind country plough

75kg for nursery cum transplanting


Varieties of this Kharif crops –

  • In TN –

X 6, X 7, CO 7, WCC 75(World Cumbu Composite)

COH 8, K 3 etc

CO 9 is a good fodder variety . Its combination with CO 5 cowpea is a specialty


  • Some identified varieties for north

Pusa 23 (MH 169), Pusa 322, ICMH 451, ICHM 356

HHB 60, 67, 68, 50

RHB 30, 90

MH 605 (Pusa 605), MH 790, MH 782

Field Preparation

Ploughing = Plough the field with an iron plough once (or) twice.

Weed Management-

  • Hence inter –cultural operation with machinery.
  • Herbicides pre-emergence
  • Atrazine 0.25 kg
  • Pendimethalin if intercropped with pulses


Application of fertilizers on Kharif crops

  1. Fertilizer schedule –
  • May be based on soil test
  • Irrigated = Hybrids : 80:40:40 · Varieties : 70:35:35
  • Rainfed = Low rainfall : 40:30:30 · Moderate to high : 60-80:40:40
  • N in 2 splits and P & K as basal
  1. Micro-nutrients (for deficient soils)-
  • Zn 25 kg
  • Fe 12-5 to 25.0kg



  • At physiological or when the grain moisture is 15-20%
  • The ear heads are separated and dried and threshed
  • Threshed grains should be dried to 12-14% moisture

Grain Yield of this Kharif crops

  • In Irrigated condition, Yield of Pearl millet = 3.0 to 3.5 t/ha
  • In Rainfed condition, Yield of Pearl millet = 1.2 to 1.5t/ha

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It is Arpan Priy Das from west champaran, Bihar. Arpan started his blog about agricultural information named as “ECOHILLAGRI.COM ” He started his blog to help many agricultural or other students as well as farmers. so, it is necessary for them to learn about agriculture that is useful for students as well as farmers and that all concepts are present in this blog.

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