GROUNDNUT PRODUCTION IN
Groundnut is an
important cash crop in barani areas of upper Punjab and parts of
NWFP. In Sindh, it is grown under irrigated conditions. About 84 %
of the total groundnut area lies in Punjab, 13% in NWFP and 3 % in
Sindh. During 1998-99, the total area under groundnut was 97,500
hectares with the production of 104,000 tons and average yield of
The sub-soil as well
as surface soil play an important role in obtaining higher yield and
the quality of groundnut. A well drained, coarse textured and sandy
loam soil is suitable for groundnut production. Pods produced on
these soils will be clean and bright as desirable market trait. Soil
which contains an appreciable amount of clay may result in crust
formation and the pegs may not be able to penetrate into the soil
for fruiting, moreover, it is very difficult to harvest groundnut
grown on such type of soils. Sandy loam soils are generally low in
fertility, therefore, balanced doses of fertilizer and their timely
application is very important.
The primary tillage
operations should be performed at least one month before planting.
For March-April planting, deep tillage with mouldboard plough upto
the depth of 25-30 cm is recommended in early to mid February. This
operation open the soil and preseves soil moisture by recharging
from subsequent rains. Mouldboard plough should be followed by a
disc/harrow to level and pack the soil. A well prepared seedbed
results in good germination and healthy seedlings, thus the proper
plant stand is maintained.
The soils in barani
areas are generally deficient in several nutrients. This deficiency
can be corrected by the addition of proper dose of organic
fertilizers. Organic manure is important primarily as humus that are
decomposed by soil organisms to provide them nutrient and energy.
Farm yard manure is mainly used as an organic manure. It should be
applied about one month before sowing and incorporated properly in
and potassium are the three major nutrients required for this crop.
An ideal rate is 20 kg N, 80 kg P2O5 and 60 kg K/ hectare. If soil
is more sandy or intensively cropped, 100-kg K/ha is recommended.
These rates may be obtained by using a mixture of Single Super
Phosphate (SSP) and Urea or Ammonium Sulphate or with Di-Ammonium
Phosphate (DAP). Micro nutrient deficiencies iron, zinc and boron
are the most oftenly observed deficiencies. Appropriate use of these
nutrients in the form of spray or soil application could alleviate
Gypsum plays an
important role for higher production per unit area. Application of
gypsum @ 400-500 Kg/ha just at beginning time of monsoon season
(crop planted in March-April), when flowers produce viable pegs and
at flowering time of the late planted crop gives good results. In
more sandy soils higher rates of gypsum are required due to
Two types of
groundnut vaieties, spreading (runner) and erect or bunchy types are
widely grown in Pakistan. List of suitable promising varieties,
their yield potential and maturity duration is given in the
Varieties, their yield potential and maturity duration
Suitable Area Yield
Potential Maturity Duration (Kg/ha) (days)
500 mm precipitation
(Semi-spreading) All areas
planting after wheat
< 500 mm Precipitation
< 500 mm Precipitation
Swat & Malakand agency 3800
Seed selected for
planting should be bold, uniform well matured and disease free. Pods
should be shelled a few days before planting and treated with proper
fungicide. Early shelling may result in the deterioration and loss
of viability and vigour. To get optimum plant densities, recommended
seed rate for different types of groundnut is as follows:
and semi spreading types:
75 –80 kg / ha (167,000 plants)
and semi bunch types:
95-100 kg / ha (220,000 plants).
Groundnut is a highly
efficient legume crop. It begins to supply its own nitrogen after
30-40 days from planting if the correct soil bacterial are present.
It is essential to inoculate the seed immediately before planting
with efficient rhizobium strain to obtain higher yield.
be grown successfully in the areas where 250-300 mm well distributed
rain is received during the growing period of April to September.
.Mostly groundnut in Pakistan is planted in fallow lands from early
March to end April, in conserve soil moisture received during winter
rain. It can also be planted in May and June after wheat harvest if
adequate moisture is available. But the crop doses not mature
properly and yield decreases considerably. The optimum planting time
in Punjab (Pothwar area) is April. Under irrigated conditions, it is
planted in early March and harvested in August. In Sindh, the best
planting time reported is May. Short duration varieties maturing in
120-130 days can be planted at the onset of monsoon in late June or
Groundnut is usually
planted 4-6 inches deep on light soils and 2-4 inches on heavier
soils. For cultural operation ( hoeing, spraying, weeding) and
mechanical digging, it should be planted in straight lines. BARD
precision planter has been developed and successfully demonstrated
in farmers fields for planting different types of groundnut at
various plant densities. Other planting methods for line planting
include kerra and pora or dropping seeds through (naali) funnels
behind tractor drawn cultivator or through funnels on desi plough.
Plant and Row Spacing
Based on previous
research findings, the general recommendation for groundnut in
Pakistan is to plant bunch, semi bunch varieties with 45 cm row
spacing and 10 cm plant to plant spacing, which results in a plant
density of 220,000 plants / ha. On sandy soils (in low rainfall
zones) plant to plant spacing should be increased to 15cm resulting
in a plant density of 1,48,000 plants/ha. Spreading and semi
spreading type varieties should be planted with 60 cm between rows
and 10 cm between plants, resulting in a plant density of 167,000
plants / ha, whereas, in sandy soils or medium to low rainfall
zones, plant spacing within rows should be 15 cm to achieve a
population of 111,000 plants/ha.
groundnut under irrigated conditions, a rouni is needed for seedbed
preparation. First irrigation three/four weeks of sowing second
irrigation at flowering ,third irrigation at peg formation, fourth
at pod development and fifth about one month before digging, should
be applied if required.
Control: Weeding with
khurpa, kasola or rotary hoe and cultivator with small sweeps (
tractor drawn) in the direction of rows may be completed when it is
required.These operations perations should be completed before peg
formation so that the young pegs entering into the soil may not be
demaged. The first weeding can be done about four to five weeks
after planting and the second weeding before peg formation.
Control: Herbicide can be
an effective weed management tool for groundnut in Pakistan, if
applied properly at proper time. Fusilade (Fluazifop P-Butyl) a
selective (post-emergence herbicide) for grassy weeds and Johnson
grass in groundnut growing areas has been successful @ 1-2 liter/
ha, but has not yet been registered in Pakistan.
Insects, diseases and
vertebrate pests and their control
are controlled by the application of Furadan granules (3 G or 10
g) mixed with fertilizer at planting.
can be controlled by spraying dimecron, Thiodon 100% @ 1 litre/ha
mixed with 50 gallons of water. :
albistriga Wlk) the is most abundant insect in groundnut
growing areas of Pothwar (Punjab) and Swabi (NWFP). Spray of
systemic insecticides such as dimecron 100 % @ 1 kg / ha,
Buldock and Karate @ 250 g / ha should be done.
Diseases have the
least impact on groundnut production in Pakistan. However, early
leaf spot (Cercospora arachidicola) and late leaf spot (Phaeoisariopsis
personata) is prevalent and common disease in Pakistan. By the
attack of this disease some times complete defoliation of leaves may
cause significant yield reduction. This diseases can be controlled
(chemically) by one or two strategically timed applications of
fungicides such as Chlorothalonil (Daconil) and Dithane M-45 (2 %).
Wilt ( Fuzarium
sps.) and root rot (Sclerotium rolfsii) ( minor disesses)
are controlled by using different crop rotations.
Viral diseases (Peanut
Bud Nacrosis and Peanut Clump Virus) have also been observed
from groundnut growing areas. Some seed born fungal diseases also
attack the seedlings before emergence. It is therefore recommended
that the seed should be treated with a proper fungicide before
The second largest
yield reduction associated with groundnut pests in Pakistan is
caused by infestation of a variety of vertebrate pests i.e. rodents,
wild boars, porcupine, desert hares and crows.
Among the animals
damaging the groundnut crop, rates are serious pests which cause
sometimes as high as 60-70 percent. Two types of chemicals available
to control the rodents are zinc phosphide and Racumin. Baiting must
be done regularly over a period of 4-5 days until crop is mature to
ensure good control. These baits are also available with vertebrate
pest control laboratory at NARC. Burrows can be fumigated, using
Dietia capsules or Phostoxin/Agtoxin tablets which are readily
available in the market.
This animal roots out
groundnut plants, generally scooping out a depression from 5-10 cm
deep. Mostly, plant roots are exposed and plants are withered
around. They can be controlled by physical methods i.e. Shooting,
trapping and chasing etc. Special campaign is required to control
this animal. Chemical control is more effective and viable than
physical measures. Baits made from Sodium Monofluoroacetate or Zinc
phosphide with crushed wheat and maize grains and brown sugar can be
used. Before using the baits, unpoisoned baits are laid out for two
-four days for feeding the animals. When wild boars start feeding
unpoisoned baits, poison mixed baits should be placed for rebait.
porcupine recognized with black and white quills is also a serious
pest of this crop which damage the plants by clawing the groundnut
roots. Fresh burrows should be located by observing feet tracks, and
shed quills. There are two methods to control these animals, i.e.,
fumigation and baiting. For baiting Sodium Monoflouroactate (1080)
can be smeared on cut potatoes or apples and placed deep in burrows.
Racumin bait by mixing of 1:19 ratio of racumin and wheat flour with
gur or brown sugar can be used. For fumigation, 6-8 Phostoxin or
agtoxin tablets should be placed deep into the burrow and the den is
sealed firmly with vegetation and soil.
Costs of groundnut
harvesting and lack of suitable equipment to mechanize the process
is one of the major constraints to expansion of groundnut acreage in
Pakistan. In collaboration with Farm Machinery Institute and local
manufacturers, BARD Programme has developed efficient and
inexpensive equipments suitable for use by the farmers in Pakistan.
A complete set of groundnut machinery (i.e. groundnut planter,
inter-row cultivator, groundnut digger, batch type thresher, PTO
thresher, electric sheller and hand sheller) is currently available
from private manufacturers in Pakistan. Efficiency of each machine
along with the manufacturer’s name is given in the table.
Production Equipments Available In Pakistan
Planter 0.6 ha/hour Rachna
0.4 ha/hour Imran
0.4 ha/hour Imran
and Awan Engineering, Dhudial
Al-Younus Agro-Industries, Rawalpindi
250-350 (kg/hour) Mughal
Farm Machinery, Daska
Zaib Engineering, Takhtbai NWFP,
Al-Younis Agro, Industry Rawalpindi
Mughal Farm Machinery, Daska
Sheller/Grader 140 kg/hour
Al-Younus Agro-Industries, Rawalpindi
harvesting of groundnut is an important factor for getting higher
yields like other crops. Early digging results in lower maturity and
lower yield. Late digging results in more leftover losses in the
soil and high digging cost due to dry and hard soil. The optimum
time of groundnut digging is determined by digging a few plants from
the field and counting the mature pods. Digging should be stared
when 70-75 percent pods are mature. Crop should be properly digged
out with hand tools such as Khurpa, kasola, Spade, and pods are
picked up from the soil as much as possible. A tractor mounted
digger is available and could be used for digging.
Once groundnut is dug
and collected pods must be separated from vines by hand or beaten
and winnowed. This whole process is expensive, time consuming and
labour intensive. Profit from groundnut production can be enhanced
by mechanizing this process and reducing the cost of production. For
this purpose, a PTO driven FMI thresher, commercially available with
local manufacturers, can be used.
the produce is cured by sun drying for about 6-8 days to maintain
the desirable flavour and quality. At the time of digging, pods
contain about 40-50 % moisture which should be reduced to 8-10 % by
curing for safe storage. Well dried cleaned pods should be properly
stored. Excessive humidity in the store favours the fungus growth on
the pods which can damage the seed.