Rice Planting Activity

beautiful fields and roofs

This Friday, we went to rice fields to experience the complete process and methods of rice planting. It was really tired but interesting. I did not take pictures because we were in mud and the phone might be dropped.

The first method I tried is called “carabao plowing”. Carabao is water buffalo. Under the instruction of one farmer, I took the control of the carabao and started to plow the ground. I was actually pulled by that carabao because it was so strong.

The second method was machine plowing. The machine was quite heavy and it was a little bit difficult to control its orientation. However, it was much faster than the carabao plowing. During this process, my T-shirt and trousers got completely muddy.

Then I tried to plow the ground by pulling a plow. It was the most difficult one because I must plow the ground following a straight line, but it was hard to walk straight in the mud.

The next step was seedling. It was the most difficult part for me because I did not know how to not let them fall or incline. Thanks to the Indian students who were from another program. They taught me the specific method such as how to hold the seedlings. Finally, we broadcasted the seeds in paddy fields. They will grow after about 21 days, as it is the regular rice growing cycle.

After all of these, I felt that wasting food is embarrassing, because these activities are the everyday lives of farmers. Thinking of the famous Chinese agriculturalist, Longping Yuan, I felt so respectful for all his efforts in the fields, as well as all scientists who contributed their whole lifetime in the rice planting. Although we now have better living standards, we should still learn the hardship and efforts in how food is grown, so to not waste food and have a more sustainable lifestyle.

My T-shirt

IWU Freeman Asia Internship in IRRI

IRRI campus

“The International Rice Research Institute is an international agricultural research and training organization with its headquarters in Los Baños, Laguna in the Philippines, and offices in seventeen countries. ” –Wikipedia

“Innovate. Catalyze. Transform. ” –Our Goals, IRRI

IWU Freeman Asia Internship is a series of program supported by the Freeman Foundation and Illinois Wesleyan University to provide students funded internships in Asia.