Crop Diversification for Enhancing Farmers’ Income

Introduction:

Peragaon Pathar and adjoining areas in Barpeta is one of the vegetable belts of the district. Farmers of that locality grow traditional varieties of rabi vegetables and non-descript winter paddy varieties in a substantial manner.

KVK intervention:

Mr. Prafulla Das, a young and energetic farmer approached KVK Barpeta to find out ways to increase farm income. In no time, Scientists from KVK Barpeta visited the area and advised Mr. Das to go for year round farming with 3 crops per year in paddy-lentil-summer vegetable sequence. The scientists also suggested to go for high yielding varieties of paddy and lentil and hybrid varieties of summer vegetables.  Accordingly, he showed his interest in diversifying his farming in 2.6 ha of land.

Impact of intervention:

In the first phase, during 2015-16 under the guidance of KVK, he started KVK introduced lentil var. HUL-57 after winter paddy var. Ranjit. During 2016-17, Mr. Das showed his interest for high valued special rice in his farm and KVK supplied him seeds of Black rice and Bakul Joha for 0.4 ha of land during Kharif. By adopting all scientific methods of cultivation, he found the yield of 3 t/ha of Black rice and 3.3 t/ha of Bokul Joha. Because of high market demand he earned a profit of Rs. 10,000/- per bigha (Rs. 75,000/- per ha) from selling of paddy. With the guidance of KVK he went for lentil var. HUL-57 after paddy followed by hybrid varieties of summer vegetables namely cucumber, ashgourd, pumpkin and okra. Now, Mr. Das has been earning Rs. 25,000/- per month after adopting the crop diversification.

Of late, he has started one Areacanut based multi-storeyed cropping system in 0.4 ha of land. By now he has completed the plantation of Arecanut and has chosen pineapple, ginger and banana as intercrop. Moreover, farm pond of 0.26 ha of water area is also renovated for composite fish farming.

Mr. Das also raised one low cost poly-shade net house for growing off season vegetable seedlings in the month of July-August with the financial aid of IFFCO, Barpeta mediated by KVK, Barpeta.

Conclusion:

In near future, Mr. Prafulla Das is also planning to introduce high value crops like strawberry, flower plants and off season vegetable crops in his farm.   He says he has seen major changes in his income from farm after diversifying crops in his farm.

His motto now is to convert the mono-cropping system of farming to diversified farming by motivating more and more fellow farmers of his locality .

Tags: