During the growth phase of rice paddy (Orysa sativa) saplings, deadly stem borers known as "gabmaro" worms start appearing. They cling to the inner wall of the stem and the length could be as much as 30 centimetres. These insects prevent healthy rice spikes emerging out of the stem. The insects are usually green in colour with black spots in their body. Patel learnt of a very effective method from Ambalal Jivabhai, a senior resident of Rasalpur village in Thasra taluka of Gujarat, to control damage from the insects. The method involves use of inexpensive ingredients like the leaves of swamp cabbage or "naphtiya" (Ipomoea aquatica) and buttermilk. The pounded "naphtiya" leaves 3 to 4 kg to extract about 500 ml of juice. Add buttermilk 400 ml to this and dilute with 15 L of water. Stir well and add a volume of 300 ml to the tank of the spray pump, with a capacity of about 15 litres. One bigha (0.24 ha) of paddy crop needs three full tankfuls to be sprayed for achieving required control. Patel adopted the method successfully in his paddy fields at Antersunba village situated in Kapadvanj taluk. After finding its efficacy consecutively for five years, farmers in the neighbouring village too started using the method. Patel says he is able to bring almost 90 per cent of the crop under control with just one application. If necessary, he advises one more spray again within 10 days.
Formulation: Pound "naphtiya" leaves 3-4 kg to extract about 500 ml of juice. Add buttermilk 400 ml to this and dilute with 15 L of water.
Ingredients: Swamp cabbage or "naphtiya" (Ipomoea aquatica) leaves, buttermilk.