In the context of India, which of the following is/are considered to be practice(s) of eco-friendly agriculture?
- Crop diversification
- Legume intensification
- Tensiometer use
- Vertical farming
Select the correct answer using the code given below:
[UPSC Civil Services Exam – 2020 Prelims]
(a) 1, 2 and 3 only
(b) 3 only
(c) 4 only
(d) 1, 2, 3 and 4
- Crop diversification involves adding new crops or cropping systems to agricultural production on a particular farm, taking into account the different returns from value-added crops with complementary marketing opportunities. This can increase natural biodiversity and strengthen the ability of the agro-ecosystem to respond to stresses. Introducing a greater range of crop varieties in a particular agro-ecosystem can lead to diversification of agricultural production.
- Legume intensification is currently referred to as ‘Sustainable Intensification’ (SI), which encompasses three dimensions: (i) increased productivity; (ii) maintenance of ecosystem services; and (iii) increased resilience to shocks.
- Tensiometers are instruments used in irrigation scheduling to help farmers and irrigation managers determine when to water. They measure the matric potential of the soil by determining the equilibrium between the water pressure in the tensiometer and the water pressure in the soil. This technology is considered eco-friendly as it helps control excessive water use, which can distort the quality of the soil.
- Vertical farming is a farming technique that involves growing crops in vertically stacked layers. It incorporates controlled-environment agriculture and soilless farming techniques such as hydroponics, aquaponics, and aeroponics to optimize plant growth.
Therefore, option (a) is the correct answer.