Tractor-mounted sugarcane seedling transplanter developed in Coimbatore

The Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR)- Sugarcane Breeding Institute, Coimbatore, and Central Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Coimbatore regional centre, have jointly developed sugarcane seedling transplanter.

Commercialised a tractor-mounted, two-row mechanical transplanter for sugarcane seedlings raised from sugarcane bud chips and single-bud setts.

the scientists at the Sugarcane Breeding Institute have predicted that transplanter is expected to reduce the cost of sugarcane cultivation by 20%.

In the conventional system of sugarcane planting, about 8-10 tonnes of seed cane (called as setts) are being used as planting material per hectare.

"Both the quantity of seed material and the cost of seed material are relatively high which accounts for about 20% of the total cost of cultivation of sugarcane," said a release issued by the Sugarcane Breeding Institute.

Using sugarcane bud chip-raised seedlings/single-bud sett-raised seedlings for transplanting could be one of the viable alternatives for reducing the cost of sugarcane production and could help the farmer in doubling his or her income, said the director of Sugarcane Breeding Institute Bakshi Ram.

Compared to manual transplanting of seedlings, mechanised transplanting has distinct advantages such as saving cost, labour and time, offering a new and progressive change in sugarcane agriculture, said Ram.

The equipment consists of a mainframe which can be attached to standard three-point hitch arrangement of a 35 HP tractor. "Two persons will be feeding the rotating system with sugarcane seedlings in furrows at a desired adjustable spacing between rows.