Define the following: (I) mixed cropping (ii) intercropping (iii) biofertilizers

Q- Define the following:

(i) Mixed cropping

(ii) Intercropping

(iii) Biofertilizers

Answer- (i) Mixed cropping: Mixed cropping is the process of growing two or more different crops together in the same piece of land or same field is called as mixed cropping or multiple cropping. Mixed cropping is also a best method to restore the lost fertility of the soil. In this type of farming method more than one crop is grown in different methods. 

There are various principles of mixed cropping. Some of them are as follows:

1. Economy of space

2. Insurance against failure

3. Mixed cropping as well as rotation of crops.

4. Utilization of manure and water.

(ii) Inter cropping:

Inter cropping is the process of growing of two or more types of crops simultaneously in the same field in definite row pattern. In inter cropping a few crop is grown in a row format such as 1 : 1, 1 : 2 or 1 : 3. 

In intercropping a few rows of one crop alternate with a few rows of a second crop. For example: Soya bean + maize, Soya bean + bajra (finger millet) or Soya bean + lobia (cow pea).

The Inter cropping farming method is very beneficial as it helps in restoring the fertility of the soil. Some of the advantages of inter cropping are as follows:

1. It ensures maximum utilization of nutrients.

2. It reduces chances of farmer’s loss due to crop failure.

3. It also checks spreading of pests or diseases to all plants.

(iii) Biofertilizers: Biolfertilizers involves the use of organic matter such as waste of fruits, vegetables, dead plants and animals. The biofertlizers are eco friendly and are nor harmful for the soil as well as our eco system. It is not so easy to store biofertilizer but the production done using biofertilizers is not harmful just like the crop produced using synthetic or chemical fertilizers. 

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