Watermelon growers in southern districts are very happy to get bumper yield of the popular summer fruit this season.
Favorable weather, irrigation facilities, and little pest attack are the main reasons of the bumper yield of watermelon in Patuakhali, reports our correspondent.
During a recent visit, farmers in Rangabali upazila were seen harvesting the fruit and later loading it onto trucks, trawlers, cargos, and launches to sell in different places including Dhaka, Rajshahi, Khulna, Rangpur.
“I cultivated watermelon on two acres of land this year at a cost of Tk 75,000. I already sold watermelon of 50 decimals of land at Tk 1.80 lakh,” Md Arif Hawlader, a watermelon grower of Rangabali, said
“I hope to sell watermelon worth Tk 5 lakh more from the rest 1.50 acres of land if there is no disaster like storm and heavy rainfall within a month,” he added.
The fruit weighing around five-kg is selling for Tk 150 to Tk 200 this year while it was only Tk 100 to Tk 120 in last year, said Abul Kalam, a watermelon grower of Dhankhali village under Kalapara upazila.
Watermelon was cultivated on 13,718 hectares of land in eight upazilas in the district. Of them, Rangabali and Galachipa upazilas saw watermelon cultivation on 8,500 and 4,000 hectares respectively, said Hridayeshwar, deputy director of the Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE).
This year farmers face early rain that helps to earth juicy that influenced in bumper production. For these reasons watermelon's size was good, color also more bright and fresh and tastier, he said.
Our Pirojpur Correspondent reports: Around 200 watermelon growers of Chalitakhali village under Pirojpur Sadar upazila happy with the good yield of the popular summer fruit this year.
However, many farmers had to bear additional production cost to check insects that affected the fruit.
In the peak season, wholesale traders from different areas including Dhaka and Barishal come to Chalitakhali village to buy the fruit.
The fruit has been cultivated on 176 hectares of land in Pirojpur, said Arobindo Biswas, district training officer of the DAE.
Beginning the cultivation in Bangla month Magh, farmers start harvesting the fruit in Baishakh (mid-April to mid-May).
Our Noakhali Correspondent adds: Subarnachar, Sadar and Hatiya upazilas under the district saw good yield of watermelon this season but pest and fungus attack in some areas during the harvesting period has appeared as a bane for the growers.
“Despite good yield of watermelon this year, we are now frustrated as pest and fungus affected some fields just before the harvest,” said Haripada, a watermelon farmer of Purbo Charbat union of Subarnachar upazila.
Zamal Hossain, another grower, said they are not getting any results even after using pesticides.
“Laboratory tests show that the pest and fungus attack has occurred due to defect in the seeds. We have suggested farmers to be sure about the quality of seeds before using it next time,” said Dr Md Abul Hossain, deputy director of the district DAE.
In Sadar, Subarnachar and Hatiya upazilas of Noakhali, a total of 4,200 hectares of land was brought under watermelon cultivation this year, DAE sources said.