Saturday, 3 June, 2023

Sunflower farming gets popular in Shibchar

MADARIPUR: Sunflower cultivation in Shibchar upazila of Madaripur district has helped thousands of farmer secure financial solvent as they successfully made proper use of the abandoned lands.

The fields are glowing with the yellow glow of sunflowers. Thousands of sunflowers can be seen in different areas of the upazila. Where there is a spread of yellow carpet in the middle of the green. Bees buzz all over the field. Such a view of the crop field attracts beauty lovers.

In the meantime, the flowers have begun to grow. People who love nature are coming from different parts of the upazila to visit sunflower flower fields. Many enter the garden and take pictures.

According to sources in the Sadar Upazila Agricultural Extension Office, mustard farmers in the upazila are shifting to sunflower cultivation, after being inspired by the government with incentives, they cultivate sunflowers and take them as cash crops. Hysan-33 sunflower has been cultivated in 25 hectares of land.

Sunflower seed trader Shah Alam said, if the sunflower mills are contacted, farmers and wholesalers will get good prices of sunflower seeds.

If the production of sunflowers goes up, the country’s dependency on soyabean oil will be reduced by at least a little bit, he observed.

Farmer Hasanur Rahman said sunflower yields have been very good. With the irrigation, fertilisers and pesticide spray on the land, the cost of cultivating the crop in two bighas of land so far is Tk 14,000. If there is no natural catastrophe, the sunflower production of the two bighas could benefit from Taka 30,000 to 30,000, he said.

Kamal Hawlader, a farmer from Panchchar village, said that this year, for the first time, sunflowers have been cultivated on the land, on the advice of the Agriculture Officer. Hopefully, I will benefit from sunflower cultivation.

Rashed Bepari, of Kadirpur village under the same upazila, who cultivated sunflower on one acre of land, said he did not have to buy edible oil from market during the last three years as oil seed from his field is more than enough to meet his family requirement.

“I learnt from a doctor that oil from sunflower seed is better than bottled oil from the market,” he said.

Suma Akhtar, Israt Jahan Mim and Jitu, some college students who came to see sunflowers, said, we came with my friends to enjoy the magical beauty of sunflowers. We really enjoyed seeing the sunflowers. We also took pictures with the flowers. We will come another day.

Assistant teachers Jasim Uddin Shikdar and Md Jamal Uddin Khan said, we have come to know that sunflowers have been cultivated after seeing pictures on social media. So we both came for a walk. The natural environment here is very beautiful. So, all of us are capturing beautiful scenes in the frame.

Assistant agricultural officer of Sannasirchar union Partha Pratim Hira said that local farmers are getting more and more interested in the oil seed cultivation as the prices of oil are on the rise. By cultivating these flowers on the surrounding land, including the courtyard of the house, it is possible to overcome the shortage of oil and fuelwood by alleviating the shortage of the family’s consumables.

Shibchar Upazila Agriculture Officer Rafiqul Islam said that local farmers are encouraged to cultivate sunflowers as they can easily get edible oil at a low cost while price of other edible oil in the local market is high. Its cultivation process is very easy and comparatively cheaper. It has no need much irrigation, and needs a few quantities of fertilisers and insecticides that are easy to farmer, he added.

“Around 500 grams of oil is produced from one kg of sunflower, which is more than other oil seeds,” he added.

In this regard, UNO Md Razibul Islam said, sunflower is a charming flower on the one hand and a profitable crop. Farmers have been given free sunflower seeds and fertilisers to encourage in cultivating sunflower. Hopefully, the yield will be very good and the land of sunflower cultivation will increase in the future.