Maize of your Country
Maize is an important food crop of Pakistan. The maize plant is about six to eight feet high. It stalk is twelve inches to two feet long. Hot and humid climate is suitable for its cultivation. As far as the nutrients of maize are concerned, it contains 9.4 per cent proteins, 70 per cent starch, 4.2 per cent fats, urea and calcium. Besides this, maize is also used as fodder for animals. Several products such as corn oil, custard powder, jelly and glucose are made from it. After wheat and rice, maize is the third most important food crop.
In Pakistan maize is cultivated on about 1042 thousand hectares and according to the statistics of 2005-06, the country’ maize production is 3109 thousand metric tons. The average per hectare production of maize in Pakistan is three thousand metric tons which is much less than that of other countries. In spite of it, Pakistan is eighth largest producer of maize in the world. In the United States, the per hectare yield of maize is 8924 kilogram.
The American continent is the real home of maize. When the Europeans went to America they found that the natives if this region were well aware of the maize cultivation. In the Sub-Continent, the cultivation of maize began in the sixteenth century, even today; America is the largest producing country in the world. In terms of the per hectare production of maize, Italy enjoys a prominent place in the world. Its per hectare production is 9332 kilograms which is more than that of any other country in the world.
Favorable Physical Factors for the cultivation of Maize
The maize plant grow in the tropical climate and fort this reason, hot and humid climate is most suitable for it. But even in some cold countries, its production is very high.
For the better production of maize, the temperature of 21 to 27 degrees centigrade is considered appropriate. But by means of better irrigation, production can be increased in that region where the temperature is not to ideal.
Twenty or more than twenty inches if annual rainfall is required for the maize crop, artificial means of irrigation have been adopted in that region where the rainfall is less than the required amount.
For its proper growth and production, the maize crop requires fertile soil having a large proportion of vegetation elements. Thus, the fertile loamy soil of river valleys is regarded as suitable for it. High yield is obtained through artificial fertilizers in the regions where these types of soil are not available.