Introduction: -Barley being common sweet grain is one of the nutritious, delicious and easy to cultivate providing a good source for health and variety of purposes. Barley grows quickly and takes little time and energy being quite cheap. Barley belongs to the species known as Hordeum Vulgare. It is one of the members of the grass family and is a major cereal grain grown in a temperate climate. Barley can be used in a various manner such as it can be used as animal fodder, also can be used as a source of fermentable material for beer and certain distilled beverages and contributes itself as a component for various health foods. Following the traditional and ancient method of preparation, Barley grains are made into malt.
Health Benefits: – The content of all eight amino acids make Barley a suitable ingredient for being healthy. It provides following benefits:
- It is an excellent source of fiber which helps in keeping body toxin free and thus keeps intestine healthy
- It also protects especially women against developing gallstones
- The presence of phosphorous and copper present in barley grass builds an overall health of bones. Hence it proves to be a natural remedy for Osteoporosis.
- Barley being highly nutritious helps in strengthening our immunity system thereby reducing the chances of cold and flu. Iron content in barley improves blood volume thereby preventing from a disease like anemia and fatigue. It provides proper kidney function and the development of body cells. The copper content in barley enhances the blood to form hemoglobin and red blood cells.
- The presence of selenium in barley helps to preserve skin elasticity and thus protects skin against free radical damage and loosening.
- Helps in controlling Cholesterol levels
- Also helps in controlling type 2 Diabetes.
- Helps in preventing disease like Cancer
- Prevents Asthma
- Protects heart
Barley, known in different languages: –
Barley (English, Malayalam)
Climate requirement in Barley Farming: –
As stated earlier that barley grows in a temperate climate. It is best grown in the cool land area having ideal temperature hover right around freezing. It is grown in both the season winter as well as summer. Barley is mainly cultivated in India as Rabi season crop. The temperature requirement of Barley is 12 ͦC to 16 ͦC at growing stage and 30 ͦC to 32 ͦC at the stage of maturity. It has good tolerance to drought conditions.
Plantation and Sowing of Seeds in Barley Farming: –
Planting of barley depends upon the varieties. Some of the varieties are planted in spring mostly in the month of January whereas some of the varieties are fall planted where October is the best month for planting. In comparison to Wheat, Barley ripens sooner. The spring planted barley ripens within 60 to 70 days whereas the fall planted barley about 60 days after the spring growth begins. Therefore it is most suitable for double cropping scheme and a variety of crop rotations. One should be careful enough while planting barley with a drill as bearded varieties may cause planting tubes to clog.
The seeds should be sown in the rows ensuring that 20 to 25 seeds per square foot of space should be there. The various seed resources of barley consist of Organic Barley Seed namely Organic Vegetable, Organic herb and Organic Sprouting Seed. Also Heirloom seeds such as Heirloom Vegetable seeds and Heirloom Herb Seeds. All varieties of Barley seeds out-crossing plants that are wind pollinated and will cross readily with one another. If measured from saving point of view resulting strong for the long haul then it should be planted in large blocks of around 500 plants thereby saving the best 100 cobs and then mixing the seed from the same cob in order to take seed from next year. For this Hand pollination is well suited and preferred.
Soil Requirement in Barley Farming: –
Barley requires well-drained soil for better yield and germination of seeds. The seeds germinate within 1 to 2 days having a temperature range between 34F to 36F thereby the lifespan of seed being 2 years.
Barley requires only 2 to 3 irrigation in order to have optimum yield. The first irrigation starts at the time of root initiation that is 25 to 30 days after sowing while the second takes place 65 to 75 days after sowing.
Weed Control and Intercultural Operations in Barley Cultivation: –
Broad-leaf and Narrow-leaf are the most common weeds found in Barley. To control these weeds appropriate weed sides should be used. To control Broad-leaf, 625 grams of 2, 4-D (Na-Salt 80%) and 625 grams of 2, 4-D (Easter 38%) mixed with 250 liters of water is applied per hectare after a month of sowing.
Similarly to 1250 grams of Isoproturon 75%, WP mixed with 250 liters of water and then applied to 1 ha farm land after one month of sowing in order to keep the farm away from the narrow leaf.
Fertilizers used in Barley Cultivation: –
½ of the N to full dose of P is used as a basal application in case of irrigated crop whereas either after 1 month of sowing or after the 1st irrigation the remaining ½ of the N is used for top dressing.
Diseases and pests used in Barley Farming: –
The famous diseases and pests found in Barley cultivation are Covered Smut, Loose Smut, Leaf Rust, Stem Rust, Stripe Rust, Powdery Mildew, Net Blotch, Spot Blotch, Stripe, Root rot and Food rot, Mosaic and Sclerotial disease. Seed treatment can be the solution for treating some of the diseases, but it is preferable to contact local agriculture or horticulture department for better control.
Harvesting in Barley Farming: –
When barley reaches its golden color and becomes somewhat brittle means, barley is fully matured and ready for harvesting. Usually, it gets ready by end of March to mid of April. Moreover in order to prevent it from ripening barley should be harvested at the right time so as to avoid breaking of spikes. The barley crop should be stored in a dry place as it has the property of absorbing moisture from the atmosphere.
The yield of Barley crop depends upon the variety, maintenance and management of the farmland. However, the expected average yield goes to about 18 to 20 quintals/acre.