The researcher team from Agricultural Technology of UGM along with hundreds of farmers from 4 regencies in Yogyakarta developed a new technique in farming that can save water, seeds and fertilizer called the System of Rice Intensification (SRI).
â€œThe SRI method is a breakthrough in rice farming by changing the management of plants, soil, water and nutritional elements,â€ said Dr Sigit Supadmo on Thursday (13/11) at the 385th Room of Agricultural Technology Faculty (FTP) of UGM. Sigit was accompanied with two other researchers, Dr Dajafar Shiddieq, Prof Sahid Susanto and four farmersâ€™ delegations from four regencies in Yogyakarta. He explained that the SRI method can save seeds up to one-third, fertilizer up to 50% and needs lower depth of water compared to the conventional farming methods.
Sigit added that the SRI method aims to achieve high quality and quantity of rice. Of course, there are some conditions needs to be fulfilled. Farmers should plant a young seed, which age is less than 15 days. They also have to plant one seed for one hole, and the holeâ€™s distances is around 25 cm. Moreover, they also have to do the planting as soon as possible and also maintain the roots in one piece. The seeds are shallow planted, between 1 to 2 cm and the roots cannot be bended. Last, the watering must be done immediately after the planting.
Dr Djafar Shiddieq added that the SRI method is using organic fertilizer about 50% from total fertilizer usage in order to supply the soil with the nutrition they need. This means that the SRI method is profitable for long term farming, since it will improve the soil condition, physically and chemically.
Djafar Shiddieq explained that the result differs in different regencies. According to a research, using the SRI method can produce 7,9 ton of rice/hectare compared to the conventional method that produces 6,2 ton of rice/hectare Djafar also added that the method can be used in all types of rice plant. However, implementing SRI method in large scale can be troublesome since farmers have to adapt to the new cultivation method.
Sigit explained that the SRI method have been introduced since 2005. Up until now, four regencies in Yogyakarta have used the method, and those regencies are Sleman, Bantul, Kulonprogo and Gunung Kidul.
Nuryanto (51), a farmer from Ngestiharjo village, Kulon Progo, admitted that the method offer better result than the conventional method and also save water, seed and fertilizer. He have used the method since 2003 and he said that the SRI method have preserve his land fertility, since it reduces the use of chemical fertilizer.
Moreover, he added that he can reduce the amount of workers he needs to 2/3. Before using the method, he needs to plant 25 kg of seeds per hectare, and now he only needs to plant 7,5 â€“ 10 kg per hectare. Therefore he can save more money in these hard times.
(Public Relations of UGM/Gusti Grehenson)