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Comparative assessment of newly designed burial type lowland power cultivator for weed control

Authors:

G. V. T. V. Weerasooriya ,

University of Peradeniya, LK
About G. V. T. V.
Postgraduate Institute of Agriculture
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D. N. Jayatissa,

University of Peradeniya, LK
About D. N.
Department of Agricultural Engineering, Faculty of Agriculture
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M. Rambanda

University Sub Campus, Mahailluppallama, LK
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Abstract

Weeds are the major reason for the significant yield reduction in rice cultivation worldwide. Power weeders have been introduced to rice cultivation as an alternative solution for the controversial herbicide applications. The aim of this study was to appraise the newly designed burial type lowland power cultivator through a comparative performance assessment including cost economics. Five weeding methods using Cono-weeder (T1), Modified “Asakura” wooden clog (T2), Rotary power weeder (T3), Newly designed lowland power cultivator (T4) and manual weeding (T5 as the control) were evaluated. The T4 showed a significantly high field capacity of 0.04 ha/h, which is 8 times higher than T5, high field efficiency of 88.30% and weeding efficiency of 62.29% which was similar to the performance of T5. Significantly high performance indexes were observed in T2 and T4 (461.65) followed by T1 and T3. Plant damage percentage, maximum tiller number and the yield did not show any significant variation (p>0.05) among weed control methods assessed. Further, the T4 showed a significantly low cost of weeding of 6583 Rs/ha which was 76% of cost reduction of the T5, and moderately high break-even point of 0.88 ha/yr suggesting that it is appropriate for the medium and large scale farmers. Moreover, T4 showed low fuel consumption (0.556 L/h) and power requirement (0.57 kW) representing 48% and 42% respective reductions over the T3. Further, T4 showed the significant lowest weed re-growth rate which is essential for sustainable weed control. Based on the above results, newly designed burial type power cultivator could be recommended for medium and large scale paddy farming, since it showed high performance compared to other methods assessed. Machine performance could be further improved by high speed, light weight design with efficient turning mechanism. Besides, it is suggested to conduct detailed ergonomic evaluation in future investigations.
How to Cite: Weerasooriya, G.V.T.V., Jayatissa, D.N. and Rambanda, M., 2017. Comparative assessment of newly designed burial type lowland power cultivator for weed control. Tropical Agricultural Research, 29(1), pp.1–11. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/tar.v29i1.8292
Published on 31 Dec 2017.
Peer Reviewed

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