Weed density in Bt-transgenic cotton hybrid influenced by intercrops or newspaper mulch
Weed control is a major issue for the rainfed cotton growers in the Indian sub-continent. Mostly mechanical options or herbicides are used to control the weeds. Timely weeding may not be possible if it rains incessantly. Herbicides as well as use of polythene mulch are costly technologies. Since, cotton is grown in wide rows, it is possible to grow an intercrop in between the row spaces. We therefore initiated a study in 2013 to identify a suitable intercrop based on the hypothesis that weeds in cotton can be controlled by growing allelopathic intercrops. Polythene is a byproduct of the petroleum industry. Newspaper is a resource available with every household. However, it is disposed off at throw away price. We hypothesized that newspaper could be used gainfully as a mulch material and may be a cheap alternative to the polythene.