Intensification of maize (Zea mays) –based cropping sequence in rainfed ecosystem of Sikkim Himalayas for improving system productivity, profitability, employment generation and energy-use efficiency under organic management condition

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  • SUBHASH BABU ICAR-Research Complex for NEH Region, Sikkim Centre, Tadong, Gangtok 737 102
  • RAGHAVENDRA SINGH ICAR-Research Complex for NEH Region, Sikkim Centre, Tadong, Gangtok 737 102
  • R K AVASTHE ICAR-Research Complex for NEH Region, Sikkim Centre, Tadong, Gangtok 737 102
  • G S YADAV ICAR Research Complex for NEH Region, Tripura Centre, Tripura 799 210
  • D J RAJKHOWA ICAR Research Complex for NEH Region, Umiam, Meghalaya 793 103


Cropping intensity, Diversification, Energetics, Hill agriculture, Organic, Profitability


Three-year (201213, 201314 and 201415) fixed plot field experiment was conducted at Research Farm, ICAR Sikkim Centre, Tadong with five maize (Zea mays L.) based crop sequences, viz. maizefallow, maizerajmash, maizetoria, maizebuckwheat and maize (green cob)urdbeanbuckwheat to identify the resource efficient cropping systems under resource scarce, rainfed conditions of Sikkim Himalayas at an altitude of 1 300 amsl. Results showed that all the intensified cropping systems were significantly superior over maizefallow system under rainfed condition of Sikkim at mid-altitude in terms of productivity, production efficiency, profitability, land use efficiency, employment generation and energy-use efficiency. However, among the intensified cropping sequence, maize (green cobs)–urdbean– buckwheat system was most resource efficient and recorded significantly higher values of system productivity (8.89 tonnes/ha), relative system production efficiency (24.36 kg/ha/day), net return (303.4 × 103 `/ha), B:C ratio (2.59) and system employment generation (285 man-days/ha) over other cropping systems. With regards to the energetics, cultivation of three crops {maize (green cob)–urdbean–buckwheat} in a year recorded 188.9%, 192%, 25.8% and 6.5% higher gross energy return, net energy return, energy use efficiency and energy productivity, respectively, over maizefallow rotation of the region. Contrarily, maximum value of specific energy (MJ/kg) was recorded with maize-fallow and least with maize (green cob)–urdbean–buckwheat. This indicated that for the production of unit amount of grain, higher energy was required in maize–fallow system as compared to other diversified sequences.


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How to Cite

BABU, S., SINGH, R., AVASTHE, R. K., YADAV, G. S., & RAJKHOWA, D. J. (2016). Intensification of maize (Zea mays) –based cropping sequence in rainfed ecosystem of Sikkim Himalayas for improving system productivity, profitability, employment generation and energy-use efficiency under organic management condition. The Indian Journal of Agricultural Sciences, 86(6), 778–84.