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Chapter 14
Basva’s Farm

I am Basva. My father is a farmer. We live in Belvanika village in Karnataka. It is the month of July. Like every year, Appa, my father, is preparing the field to sow the onion crop. There are so many things to be done at this time. To help him I too go to the field with Appa. In the last few days, Appa has been using the Khunti (an iron rod) to dig the soil, loosen it and make it soft.

Find out

  • In Basva’s area an implement called Khunti is used to loosen the soil. What is this kind of implement called in your area? Draw it and discuss.

For the teacher: This lesson talks about the process of cultivating an onion crop. You can use this as an example to encourage children to find out and describe the process for growing some crops that are common in their area.

  • Find out from a farmer or some elders in your family, what kinds of crops are grown in your area.

Sowing the Seeds

This year also my father will sow onion seeds in the field. The bullocks will pull the Kurige and Appa will walk behind them, sprinkling the seeds.

A farmer ploughing the fields with the help of cows.

I would also like to do this, just like my Appa. But Appa says that it is necessary to drop the right amount of seeds at a regular distance. This is not so easy to do. He says that I may drop too many seeds at one place. I must wait till I am a little older to be able to do this properly.

A field with small crops.

  • What other ways could be used to plough the fields instead of animals. Discuss.

The Sprouts Appear

It is now twenty days since the seeds were sown. The onion plants have started to sprout. Along with onion plants, weeds have also come up. Weeds grow in fields and gardens, without being planted. Appa says that we must remove the weeds so that they do not take up all the water and fertilisers. If there are too many weeds, then the onion plants will not be healthy. Amma, Uncle and I, we all help Appa to take out the weeds.

A boy standing in the field.

Growing Plants

I am happy to see the plants growing. They are tall enough to reach my knees. The leaves have started turning yellow and drying up. This means that the onions are ready to be taken out.

  • Draw any crop which you have seen in the field.

Do you know why?

People plucking onions from the field.

Everyone at home will have to work to take the onions out. It is important that this should be done at the right time. Appa, Amme, Kaka and Choti Maa will do it together. If we are late, the onions will rot in the ground itself and all our hard work will be wasted.

  • Basva helps his father in the field after school hours and on holidays. Do you help the elders in your family in their work? What do you help with?

  • Do you enjoy doing that work?

The Onion Crop

Women cutting dry leaves of the onions and men are filling sacks with onions.

Everyone at home is happy. This time the onions are big and healthy. Amma and aunty use the illige to cut the dried leaves from the top of the onions. The illige is sharp and you have to be careful not to cut your fingers. Appa and Uncle fill the sacks with onions. Appa will take them in a truck to sell in the big market.

Write answers in your notebook

  • Why should Basva help Appa in the field only after school hours and on holidays?

  • Are there any fields near your house? What is grown there?

  • Basva’s Appa takes the onions to the market in a truck. Think, how would fruits and vegetables be taken to another place, if there were no proper roads.

  • What kind of vehicles are used to carry fruits and vegetables? Draw a picture of one of these vehicles in your notebook.

Find out and write

  • Given here are pictures of some implements used by Basva’s family. Write the names of the implements. Also write what these are called in your area? What work are they used for?

Implement used in ploughing the fields.

Name (in this chapter)

Name in your area


A tool used for digging soil.

Name (in this chapter)

Name in your area


An implement with wooden board and a curved knife over it.

Name (in this chapter)

Name in your area


  • Many steps are needed to grow crops. Look at the pictures and mark them in the correct order.

Woman plucking onions from the ground.
Woman pulling out crops from the field.
Farmer throwing seeds in the field.

Farmer digging soil with a tool.

Farmer cutting crops with a knife.

Farmer sewing sacks full of onions.

  • Find out about a crop that is grown in your area. Also find out the steps that are part of this work. Draw them in your notebook.