The maize farmers in five upazilas under the district are expecting bumper yield of the crop that sees doubling of the cultivation area in a year.
This year 25,000 hectares of land in the district has been brought under maize cultivation although it was only 13,000 hectares last year, said sources in the Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) in Lalmonirhat.
Increasing number of farmers are getting interested to cultivate maize as the crop can be cultivated anywhere, even on abandoned lands, and it brings good profit for relatively lower cost, growers said.
“I have cultivated maize on 20 bighas of land leased from Bangladesh Railway at Balatari in Sadar upazila and hope to get 560 maunds of yield this year," said Alamgir Hossain Babu, 47, of Kalibari village in Lalmonirhat Sadar.
“I spent Tk 6,000 for cultivating maize on one bigha of land and it is expected to bring at least Tk 8,000 as profit. I will cultivate maize on a large area of land if I get agriculture loan from the bank or any quarters," he said.
Maize cultivation requires less cost for irrigation, labour and fertilisers, compared to other crops, said Aklasur Rahman, 55, of Dowani village in Hatibandha upazila.
“I got 104 maunds of maize from four bighas of land last year and hope to get better yield this year. I sold the crop at Tk 460 per maund last year," he said.
Delowar Hosain, Naresh Chandra, Babul Miah, Shahed Miah, Rajoni Kanta Sen and several other farmers at Bawra village in Patgram upazila said they have been earning good profit by cultivating maize during the last few years.
Middlemen often make advance payment for purchasing the crop, they added.
Safayet Hossain, deputy director of DAE in Lalmonirhat, said farmers will achieve bumper yield of maize this year as they used good seeds and the weather is favourable.