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Chena, Common Millet, Broom-corn millet Vernacular names: Chena, Barri (Hindi), Vari (Marathi), Baragu (Kannada), Variga (Telugu), Pani Varagu (Tamil), Cheena (Bengali), Cheno (Gujrati), Bacharibagmu (Oriya), Cheena (Punjabi). Climate Proso millet is a crop of warm climate. It is grown extensively in warm regions of the world. It is highly drought resistant and can be grown in areas where there is scanty rainfall. It can withstand water stagnation also to some extent. It is a hardy crop which completes its life cycle in a short span of time. Soil Proso millet can be grown both in rich and poor soils, having variable texture, ranging between sandy loam to clays of black cotton soils, Coarse sands are not suited for proso millet cultivation. Well drained loam or sandy loam soils free from stones and rise in organic matter are ideal for proso millet cultivation.
Soon after harvesting of the previous crop, the field should be ploughed to expose the soil to sun and enable it to retain more moisture. With the onset of monsoon, the land should be harrowed two or three times and then finally leveled. When it is being grown during summer, one irrigation should be given prior to land preparations. As soon as the soil comes in the working conditions, the seedbed should be prepared by running harrow or desi plough thrice followed by planking. Proso millet needs a firm and clean seedbed but does not respond to deep ploughing.
The rainy season crop is sown in onset of monsoon preferable in July. September –October in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, Mid-March, mid-May in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh as irrigated catch crop. It is chiefly grown in central and eastern Uttar Pradesh, western Bihar, North Eastern states and Andhra Pradesh.
Time of Sowing :
As a kharif crop, proso millet should be sown in the first fortnight of July with the onset of monsoon rains and as a summer crop it should be sown by the Feb/March. During summer, it would be desirable to sow proso millet as soon as the harvesting of the Rabi crop is over.
Manures and Fertilizers :
Proso millet being a short duration crop, requires relatively less amount of nutrients compared to other cereals. To get a good crop, general fertilizer recommendations under irrigated condition are 40-60 kg N, 30 kg P2O5 and 20 kg K2O per hectare. Apply half of the N and whole amount of phosphorus and potash as a basal dose at the time of sowing. The remaining half of N should be applied at the time of the first irrigation. Under rainfed condition, fertilizer dose is reduced to half of the irrigated crop. If organic manure is available, it may be added to the soil about a month before sowing at the rate of 4 to 10 tons per hectare. Fertilizer required for different states is as follows:
Proso millet sown during kharif season, generally does not require any irrigation. However, at tillering stage, if dry spell prevails for longer period, then one irrigation must be given to boost yields. Summer crop, however, would require two to four irrigations depending upon soil type and climatic conditions. Give first irrigation 25-30 days after sowing and second irrigation about 40-45 days after sowing.