A good number of farmers in Narail are benefiting from the organic cultivation of cucumber.
Over 200 hectares of land, including 140 hectares in Sadar upazila, 56 hectares in Kalia and 15 hectares in Lohagara upazila have been brought under the organic farming of cucumber, said Chinmoy Roy, deputy director of the Department of Agriculture Extension in Narail.
Vermicompost, an organic fertilizer made mainly of cow dung and earthworm, is used by farmers mostly in Baragati, Shoilpur, Kalora, Sheikh-hati, Bisli in Sadar upazila, Baro-Kalia, Gobindopur, Baoisona, Khasial of Kalia, and Naldi, Mithapukur, Narandiya, Itna of Lohagara, he said.
“And to kill insects, the farmers use sex pheromone traps. Male insects are attracted by the artificial scent similar to that of the other sex, drop to containers with detergent mixed water and die,” the official added.
“Use of vermicompost and sex pheromone traps has lowered our production cost for cucumber. It takes only 50 thousand taka to prepare an acre of land for cucumber and the harvest starts within 45 days of planting. The produce is sold for up to Tk 3 lakh,” said Ali Haider Litu, a farmer of Chasra village.
Due to good yield of the crop, some temporary warehouses have been made in the village, he said.
Yusuf Ali, another farmer of the village, said he planted cucumber on his 24 decimals of land 45 days before the Eid-ul-Azha and started selling the vegetable for 50 to 60 taka during the festival.
“Although the price has come down to around 40 taka per kg, I have got about one lakh taka by selling the item. The cultivation cost stood at only 20 thousand taka as I have not used any chemical fertilizer or pesticide on my cucumber beds,” he said.
Nurul Haq, a wholesaler from Jashore, said he buys organic cucumber from Narail for Tk 1200 to Tk 1300 per maund (40 kg) and sell it for Tk 1700 to Tk 1800 in different and markets.