Cow pea- Planting activities
Cowpea is propagated through seeds. The recommended seed rate for bush type is 8-10 kg/acre and trailing type is 1.6-2 kg/acre. The crop is grown throughout the year.
Plough the land thoroughly 2-3 times and remove weeds and stubbles. Make channels of 30 cm breadth and 15 cm depth at 2 m apart to drain off excess rainwater.
The seeds are either broadcasted or dibbled in the soil. The spacing for bush type is 30 x 15 cm and pandal type is 2 x 2 m. For semi-trailing varieties, spacing needed is 45 x 30 cm.
Dibble two seeds per hole. In trailing type ensure three good plants per pit. Cowpea seeds should be inoculated with Rhizobium culture.
For treating with rhizobium, mix the inoculant (250 to 375 g/ha) uniformly with the seeds by using minimum quantity of water (or kanjivellam of the previous day.
Dry the inoculated seeds under shade over a clean paper or gunny bag and sow immediately. The Rhizobium culture or the inoculated seeds should not be mixed with chemical fertilizers.
Lime or dolomite has to be applied in acid soils two weeks ahead of fertilizer application. Organic manure @ 40 kg/cent is recommended at planting time.
Apply recommended basal dose of fertilizers at the time of planting.