Growing Yardlong Wonders
By Aswathi Krishna | Published: 24th February 2014 10:15 AM |
It was not profit but interest in farming that drove Ummer Vadakkedath and Moosakoya Kariyeri of Pettikadavu in Peruvayal grama panchayat, Kozhikode to yardlong beans cultivation. In a 30 cent plot, they jointly grow yardlong beans, which they sell at the Palayam vegetable market.
“We had been farming other vegetables in the plot for the past several years. But recently we shifted our focus to yardlong beans,” says Ummer Koya. What makes them pay particular attention to the crop is its easy cultivation method. “There is no need to worry about pests and manure. It does not require extra irrigation,” they become eloquent about the merits of the vegetable.
It was around 10 years ago that farmers-cum-neighbours Moosa, 69, and Ummer, 42, started joint farming. Born in traditional farmers’ families, there was no need for them to get any training. “Kids show little interest in farming these days. We give them a free hand to select their occupation,” they say. Praising the Krishi Bhavan at Peruvayal, Ummer says that timely intervention of the officials at the Krishi Bhavan helped them a lot to develop their farm. They provided them with seeds and guidance.
The duo keeps middlemen away from their business. “In order to reduce the workload we can depend on a middleman, but we have avoided that to maintain our good name in the market. We like to produce as well as market our products ourselves,” says Ummer. Toeing the same lines, Moosakoya says, “We also advise other farmers in the region to not to fall prey to middlemen’s tactics.”
When asked about the price, they say it depends on the market rate on the particular day. “We use cow dung and ash as fertilisers. It also helps to nurture the soil,” they say. Some farm enthusiasts purchase beans directly from their farm.
Moosa says that a farmer will benefit more from yardlong beans cultivation if he systematically arranges the plot in such a way that direct sunlight does not touch the plants. It requires moisture. “According to experienced farmers, focusing on a particular crop can earn a farmer more benefits. Instead of looking for more vegetables and paddy varieties, farmers have to create their own success mantra,” says Moosakoya. “They cannot go an extra mile if they confine themselves to being ordinary farmers,” he says.
“By concentrating on a single produce, now they are the most reliable names as far as beans cultivation is concerned,” says Ramachandran, a native.