© 2023 Dr Margaret Sheppard

Occupations Food Production Market Small Business Building Other Occupations

Cultivation and Development of the Rice Crop

The rice crop needs to be constantly checked. Following initial preparation of the plots and planting, the germinating crops need to be checked for germination and growth and may need to be  re-seeded if necessary e.g if heavy rain has washed out the seeds.

Developing rice. The “islands” where the paddy farmers live amongst the coconut trees

Increasingly paddy farmers are building more substantial houses at their paddy fields as access to transport, pre-schools, primary and secondary schools and clinics improve.

Typical paddy field in the rice growing areas. The individual plots are very level so the rice is growing evenly through the water that has flowed in through the “cuts” that have been made in the banks between the plots.

Productive paddy field in the Buttala area

Owner inspecting the developing rice crop

Irrigating paddy plots in Buttala area.

Irrigating the paddy fields in Ambalantota area before planting the rice. The cuts in the banks that allow the water to flow into the plots from the irrigation ditches can be seen. These can be blocked off if necessary if individual plots need replanting without re-flooding the whole paddy fields.

Farmer is weeding  his  paddy field plots. Paddy field in foreground has not developed well so has had to be re-flooded and re-seeded.

Checking the developing rice to see if additional planting will be required.

The rice is growing steadily

Walking through the paddy field on the raised banks between the plots in Ambalantota area. The rice is progressing well.

View from an “island” into the paddy field  where the owner and labourers live amongst their banana, coconut and mango trees. They may also plant a vegetable plot on the “island”. This rice crop is developing well.