cropping season in India

List of cropping seasons in India

Agriculture is dependent upon climatic variations, and in India we also followed Agriculture seasons based upon the time of the year especially seeing the climatic conditions. India’s cropping seasons are related to onset and offset of monsoon.

Major cropping seasons in India

In India, we have 3 mains cropping seasons. Here, in this article we have detailed out these agriculture seasons.

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Kharif season

Directly related to Southwestern monsoon. Hot and humid condition.

Starts from June, end till October

Crops grown: Rice, maize, millet, cotton, groundnut etc

Kharif season is directly related to rainy season in India, when the crops sown are those which have high water requirements. The sowing begins from onset of monsoon (typically first week of June in Kerala) and as per monsoon onsets in different part of country (eg first week of July in Punjab when monsoon reaches there).

Rice is the main kharif crop which is sown major parts of India during Kharif cropping season. India is the second largest producer of rice, and account for 20% of world’ production.

Maize is second most kharif crop which is sown in various part of country.

Kharif word originate from Arabic language and it means autumn.

Rabi season

Dry season when temperature is low during sowing and high during reaping.

Starts from November, end till March

Crops grown: Wheat, barley, mustard, tobacco

Wheat is the main rabi crop. India is world’s second largest producer of wheat. UP, Punjab and Haryana are three biggest states producing wheat in India.

Rabi word originates from Arabic language and it means spring.

Zaid season

Minor season which comes in between Rabi and Kharif seasons. It is further classified into 2 seasons.

Zaid Kharif: Aug-Sept

Zaid Rabi: Dec-Jan

This season is mainly used to grown vegetables as per the climatic conditions. For example: Cucumber, bitter gourd, water melon and musk melon are some of the zaid crop. These crops are grown on irrigated land and they do not wait for a monsoon.


As we can see India follows 2 major and 1 minor seasons  for sowing crops and vegetables. You can refer to below diagram for easier understanding.

Agriculture seasons in India

Points to note:

  1. Difference between Kharif and Rabi season

Kharif – monsoon, humid, water during sowing

Rabi – dry, low temperature during sowing, high during reaping

  1. Main Rabi and Kharif crops

Kharif – Rice and Maize

Rabi – Wheat


We hope that you have now understood different cropping seasons in India. If you have any doubt regarding this article, please feel free to write to us or post on our discussion forum.

We are also offering study material, online coaching and test series. If in case you are preparing for agriculture exams, you can refer to following links:

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