RANGPUR: Our country is now focused on growing more and more vegetables. There are some particular regions for cultivating vegetables. For example, many char people in Rangpur agriculture region are famous for growing pesticide-free vegetables.
The most encouraging thing is that organic fertiliser and cares a lot about the soil’s health. They are also aware about food safety.Pesticide-free vegetables’ farming adopting eco-friendly agricultural technologies without pesticides is expanding in char areas bringing fortune to many char people in Rangpur agriculture region.
Officials of the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE) said vegetables and spicy crops like carrot, sweet pumpkin, brinjal, radish, spinach, balsam, basil, squash, onion, garlic, gourd, green chili and tomato are mostly being cultivated on char lands.
Being inspired by the DAE, hundreds of landless, small and marginal farmers living in char and riverside villages have brought vast tracts of char lands under vegetables’ farming in all five districts of the region this season.
The vegetables are being cultivated adopting eco-friendly agriculture technologies and intercropping methods using organic fertilisers and agronomic management to produce more nutritious vegetables.
Deputy Director of the DAE for Rangpur Agriculturalist Dr Md Sarwarul Haque said farmers are cultivating pesticide-free vegetables using composts and organic pesticides without using chemical pesticides on char lands like in some areas of mainland.
“Popularisation of ecological agriculture like cultivation of pesticide-free vegetables on char areas with application of biofertilisers and composts can reduce negative impacts of conventional agriculture on public health, environment and ecology,” he added.Kawnia Upazila Agriculture Officer in Rangpur Agriculturist Md Saiful Alam said Bangladesh is a riverine country where many people are living in char areas and erosion, floods, droughts and adverse situations have become their companions.
Considering these aspects, the DAE is providing training, inputs and counseling to char people on farming pesticide-free vegetables adopting eco-friendly technologies on char areas during the last 12 years.
“Being inspired, char people are expanding cultivation of pesticide-free vegetables to enhance production of poison-free vegetables in riverine char areas,” Alam added.
In Kawnia upazila alone, people have brought 130 hectares of char lands and dried-up riverbeds under farming of pesticide-free vegetables to enhance production of poison-free vegetables on the Teesta riverbed this season.
Sub-assistant Agriculture Officer Emdadul Haque of Balapara union in Kawnia upazila said farmers are cultivating chemical pesticide-free vegetables on char lands adopting latest technologies.
Housewife Bijlee Begum of village Char Pran Nath in Kawnia upazila said she has changed fortune through farming pesticide-free brinjal adopting eco-friendly technologies on char lands.
Being inspired by the DAE, Bijlee with her husband Manjurul had started cultivating brinjal on 20 decimals of char lands on the erosion-prone Teesta riverbed three years ago.
“I applied vermin composts and used sex pheromone traps while farming brinjal adopting eco-friendly technologies without using chemical fertilizers or pesticides. I am getting excellent yield and lucrative profits now like in the previous years,” Bijlee said.
Farmers Belal Hossain and Dulal Mian of Char Harin Sharma village in Tepamadhupur union of Kawnia upazila said they are harvesting pesticide-free vegetables to reap excellent profits following lucrative prices.
Farmer Ful Mian of char Madaripara village in Haripur union of Sundarganj upazila in Gaibandha said he has cultivated brinjal on two bighas of char lands. He is earning well now by selling harvested brinjal at better prices.
Farmers Monser Ali and Dhirendra Nath of Char Chawrabari village on the Dharla riverbed in Phulbari upazila of Kurigram said they are reaping excellent profits by selling their cultivated pesticide-free brinjal on one bigha of land each this season.