Agriculture in India is panchang(पञ्चांग) driven. We plan agriculture activities based on specific tithis. Take for example: Monsoon crop preparation starts very early summer.
अक्षय तृतीया – The day when we start new crop season. It is the day when farmer begins new food cycle for us. Day when farmer community requires our support. It is not just about food, essential rain cycle depends upon how for next 1-2 months we maintain soil moisture. Once the land is ploughed, it is kept open for cows grazing. Free flow of cow urine and dung keep the soil moisture intact.
Keeping land open to the sun for 1-2 months before monsoon along with cow dung and urine based moisture play role in bringing rain to the land as per latest research hints.
Moisture, such as from soil, is one of three ingredients necessary to create rain. Also needed are an upward motion of air from the earth’s surface into cooler parts of the upper atmosphere, which drier soils are good at facilitating, and a source of water vapor.
Maintaining soil moisture with the help of cow dung is not only important for soil fertility but also to attract monsoon rain and future ground-water storage.
Here is the research supporting this timeless methods followed by Indian farmers.
Does Rain Follow the Plow?
Welty and Zeng found that morning soil moisture can affect afternoon rain accumulations over the Southern Great Plains during the warm season and the impact differs based on atmospheric conditions. On days when the wind brings limited moisture to the region, drier soils enhance afternoon rain. But when the wind brings greater moisture to the region, wetter soils increase afternoon rain.
“The dry soils that enhance afternoon rain are acting like conveyor belts for warm air that’s being sent into the upper atmosphere,” Zeng said. “Combine that upward motion with moisture and a water vapor source, and the result is afternoon rain.”
Conversely, when atmospheric conditions are bringing moisture to the region, it acts as a source of water vapor, which, when added to the upward motion of air, produces rain.
Their findings suggest that land surface changes in response to both climate and human activity could be significant.
Zeng, whose research specialties include climate modeling, land-atmosphere-ocean interface processes and hydrometeorology, noted the ideas developed during the study could be further used for “global analysis based on NASA satellite measurements and climate models.”