AGRICUI TURF 29
or 28 per cent. of the net cultivated area. Wheat (176), gram (170),
barley (139), pulses (99), jowdr (95), arhar (81), and kodon and small
millets (64), are also important food-crops. The District is one of
the largest poppy-growing areas in the United Provinces. In 1903-4
the area under poppy was 48 square miles, and the- price paid to the
cultivators for their opium has sometimes exceeded the land revenue
demand on the whole District.
Immediately after the Mutiny there was a great extension of cultiva-
tion. The series of bad seasons commencing in 1891 checked the rise
which had continued since the first settlement; but after 1897 another
increase took place, and the net cultivated area is now about 7 per cent.
higher than it was forty years ago. This increase in the area under the
plough has also been accompanied by an extension of the system of
double-cropping, and by an increase in the area sown on the banks of
jhils with small millet and rice to ripen in the hot season. The most
important increase has been in the area under poppy, and the general
tendency has been to cultivate the more valuable crops in place of
inferior staples. There has been a little reclamation of land by throw-
ing dams across ravines to prevent erosion and to collect silt. Advances
are freely taken, especially under the Agriculturists' Loans Act. The
total lent by Government during the ten years ending rgoo was
3,8 lakhs, of which z•4 lakhs was advanced in the famine year 18q6-7-
In the next four years loans averaged only Rs. 4,ooo. A few small
agricultural banks have been started.
Pasture land is scarce, and the breed of cattle is poor, the best
animals being all imported. Ponies are still largely used as pack
animals; but the breed is very inferior. A stallion is now maintained
in the District, to introduce a better strain. Sheep and goats are kept
in large numbers, to provide wool, meat, milk, and manure.
Rae Bareli is well provided with means of irrigation. In 1903-4
the irrigated area was 469 square miles, of which 300 were supplied
from wells, 164 from tanks or jhils, and 5 from other sources. The
number and importance of wells is increasing, and the safety of the
crops is thereby enhanced, as jhils fail in dry years, when most needed.
The larger wells are worked by bullocks; but where the water-level
is higher, the dhenkli or lever and the pot and pulley worked by hand
are used. Water is raised from jhils in the swing-basket. There are
very few artificial tanks, and those which exist are ascribed to the
Bhars. The larger streams are little used for irrigation, as their béds
lie deep below the surface of the country.
Kankar or calcareous limestone is found in both block and nodular
formations in most parts and is used for making lime and metalling
roads. Saline eforescences called reh are collected for making coarse
glass and for other purposes.