Generally, it is the practice with all the big as well as medium sized cultivators, to preserve a part of their harvest till the next sowing season so as to utilise it as seed. Only the small and poor cultivators who cannot afford to do so depend on the outside supply for meeting their seed requirements. Besides, those cultivators who want to replace their old seed for the new promising varieties and those who want to undertake cultivation afresh, also depend upon the outside supply. The cultivator is very careful about the selection of good quality seed. He takes care that the grains preserved by him are bold and healthy and are lustrous in colour and at the same time free from insect attack.

Selection of seed is confined mostly to jowar, wheat, tur and groundnut. A few progressive cultivators get their cotton ginned privately and separate the seed from cotton.

Selected earheads of good size, having bold lustrous grains are picked up on the threshing yard and threshed separately. The threshed grains are preserved along with the bhusa (chaft) which causes itching on contact. This is sometimes mixed with some quantity of neem leaves to prevent insect attack. Wheat seed and jowar seed is stored in kanagi made out of tur stalks, cotton stalks or other suitable material like bamboo. Groundnut pods are sieved and pods of bigger size are selected for seed purposes, and filled in gunny bags. No special precaution is taken in preserving groundnut seed.

Many big cultivators store seed in excess of their own requirements and sell it to other needy cultivators at the sowing time. They get a premium over the market rates prevailing for the ordinary grain of its kind. Merchants dealing in cotton and groundnut also sell seed to the cultivators.

Taluka Co-operative Agricultural Associations established in each taluka also stock and distribute the seed. Since the introduction of cotton pool system by the Agriculture Department, the Agricultural Associations have been entrusted with the cotton pool work in each taluka of the district. The collection of kapas and its ginning are done under the supervision of the officer of the Agricultural Department so that the purity and quality of seed is ensured. This seed is purchased by the Agriculture Department and handed over to the Agricultural Associations for distribution.

There are two big Government Seed and Demonstration Farms in the district; one at Achalpur established in 1927 and another at Amravati established in 1954-55. They have cultivable area of 101.17 hectares (250 acres) each. Agricultural research [More details about this are given in section on Agricultural Research and Education of this chapter.], agronomical research and varietal experiments of different strains are conducted at these farms. The Department of Agriculture is propagating improved strains of cotton, jowar, groundnut and vegetables, evolved at these research stations. The Department of Agriculture established in 1957-58 nine taluka seed farms at Anjangaon, Walgaon, Achalpur, Kusumkot, Yerla, Tersa, Chandur Bazar, Chandur Railway and Dhanova. These farms have an area of 144.058 hectares (356 acres) under them. Nucleus seed thus obtained from these Government farms and the taluka seed farms is multiplied under official supervision, in a suitable locality, on the fields of cultivators known as the " registered seed farmers". The resultant produce is again purchased by the Department at a certain premium over the prevailing market rate. This seed is subsequently multiplied on a larger area in the same manner. A brief description of various schemes forming part of the seed improvement and seed supply programme is given below.

Cotton Extension scheme.

The area under cotton in the district was 2,25,180.000 hectares (5,56,000 acres) in 1950-51, 3,23,190 hectares (7,98,000 acres) in 1956-57 and 3,38,765.490 hectares (8,36,458 acres) in 1958-59. The area under improved varieties was 39,771.000 hectares (98,200 acres) during 1950-51 and rose to nearly 20,25,000.000 hectares (five lakhs acres) in 1958-59.

The varieties recommended and distributed by the Department of Agriculture are Buri 0394, Buri 147 and Virnar 197-3. The distribution of H 420 cotton is stopped since 1957-58. The cotton extension scheme is financed partially by the Indian Central Cotton Committee. The cotton extension scheme includes Virnar Cotton Seed Distribution and Multiplication Scheme introduced in the district from 1958-59. It is fully financed by the State Government.

Pilot Wheat Seed Scheme.

This scheme is in operation in the district since 1955-56. Hy 65 wheat seed is distributed under this scheme. The performance of this variety under irrigation has been quite satisfactory. However, under unirrigated conditions its outturn is not satisfactory. During 1956-57, rust disease affected the wheat crop on a large scale, and varieties such as bansi, bansipalli and vijay suffered severely. But it was observed that damage to Hy 65 crop was almost negligible. In 1955-56, 42.923 q. (115 maunds) of improved seed were distributed as against 331.437 q. (888 maunds) in 1956-57. 244.659 q. (655 1/2 maunds) in 1957-58 and 75.021 q. (201 maunds) in 1959-60. Its cultivation occupied 63.3015 hectares (156.3 acres), 479.5200 hectares (1,184.0 acres) and 107.325 hectares (265.00 acres) in 1955-56, 1956-57 and 1958-59. respectively.

Groundnut Seed Distribution.

This scheme is in operation in the district since 1956-57. Improved variety Ak 12-24 evolved by the department was cultivated and distributed throughout the district as shown below: -


Quantity distributed (in quintals)

Area covered (in hectares)


180.27 (483)

151.75 hect. (375)


509.09 (1,364)

526.08 hect. (1,300)


1106.66 (2,965)

1,011.69 hect. (2,500)


1191.38 (3,192)

1,214.04 hect. (3,000)

Other Improved Seeds..

Other seeds of improved varieties of jowar, tur, Kopargaon mug, etc., are also propagated and distributed by the department. Improved vegetable seed is collected by the bagwans (dealers in vegetable) who sell it to the needy cultivators at a premium. Citrus nurseries are raised by the well-to-do cultivators or landlords nearabout Warud. On an average, annually about 4,00,000 plants are raised on 60 private nurseries. The notable fact is that these plants are sold to cultivators from far and wide.