Delayed monsoon withdrawal to benefit rabi sowing.

The delayed southwest monsoon withdrawal will benefit winter (rabi) crops like wheat and mustard, the sowing of which has kick started in pockets of Rajasthan. The sowing of rabi crops wheat, barley, gram, lentil, rapeseed, mustard and safflower normally begins from October through February and harvesting starts from March. The crop yields are dependent on soil moisture and its availability to support plant growth. Because of departure rains, there is adequate soil moisture in some state to begin rabi sowing. This year, the withdrawal of monsoon from most parts of India is almost a month behind the normal schedule of September 1. With favourable soil conditions, farmers in Rajasthan have already started planting the mustard crop and sowing of other rabi crops will begin in the coming weeks.