1. Intercropping saved expenses on land preparation and ridge making, if onion, sugarcane and wheat is intercropped.
2. Intercropping helps to cover the shortage of irrigation water by cultivating crops on ridges, needs limited water. This mean intercropping is useful in case of limited irrigation water.
3. Intercropping improves soil fertility if shallow and deep root crops are cultivated simultaneously in onion, sugarcane and wheat intercropping as well.
4. Intercropping do not needs traditional crop rotation but the crop rotation is covered automatically by intercropping pattern in the same area.
5. There is a common soil erosion problem in many sandy and sandy loam soils. Intercropping is a better way for prevention from erosion, because soil is covered in one or other crop plants for long time.
6. There is common marketing problems of agricultural produces and the price goes very up or very down and the growers facing very alarming situation, if the prices are very low. Therefore monocropping is risk, whereas in case of intercropping, the situation could be faced easily because one crop can cover other.
7. Pest and pathogen issues are very much clear in case of mono cropping pattern. In case of serious condition the whole single crop could be damaged but in case of intercropping, if one crop is damaged, other may remain safe, if are selected on the basis of pests and pathogen problem. Intercropping helps integrated management of crops for the pest and pathogen management.
8. Interculturing is major practice, this need more labor and cost of labor/ weedicide for management of weeds. Monocropping needs many Interculturings as compared to intercropping. Intercropped crops do not need repetition of interculturing, if two or more than two crops are cultivated in same field during the same season.
9. However this is a need of time to select good crops for intercropping. They must not compete for light, nutrition, irrigation water, air, planting space, macro and micro organisms etc.
10. Some plants have allelopathic effect on others, therefore, be careful during selection of crops for intercropping.
11. There must not be the crops of same genus of the same family in intercropping otherwise these may compete for light, air, nutrients etc and also may be a problem of pests, pathogens and parasites.
12. The maturity time should not be same in case of intercropping.
13. Selection should be based on harvesting pattern e.g. intercropping of cotton and okra is not suggested due to there picking pattern as well as same pest issue.
14. Do not select the crops in intercropping having lodging characters.
15. Climbing crops must not be intercropped.
16. The last but not least, this should be kept in mind that planting space of intercrops must be maintained properly and There should not be thick sowing.
Introductory explanation on Onion, wheat and sugarcane intercropping” in the presence of Mr. Usman Khan, Assistant Commissioner, Mirpurkhas, a chief guest of program and Mr. Ghulam Qadir Khaskhely, AD, Agri. Ext. Mirpurkhas, while the FAO UKAID Officials and NRSP representative also on stage (above) and Question answer session in the field (below).