ROURKELA: Small tribal villages like Kopishtola, Kopsingha and Kundaposh under Bisra block in Sundargarh district are now smiling with sunflowers. The sunflowers in long patches of land amidst hills, large trees, rivers have added to the scenic beauty of the district.
With the support of the district agricultural office under Rashtriya Krushi Vikas Yojana, the farmers of the district, mainly in Bisra and Lephripara block, have successfully planted the sunflowers, in about 200 hectares during this season. The plants have already grown up with beautiful yellow flowers and the farmers are now gearing up for the yield period.
Sources said, considering the land in Sundargarh district suitable for sunflower plantation, the district agriculture office of the district took the decision to go for the cultivation. Accordingly, a patch of about 100 hectors land each in Bisra and Lephripara block were identified, comprising about 250 farmers.
The sources pointed out that according to the provisions of the krushi vikas yojana, the farmers were provided bio fertilizers, micro nutrients and pesticides free of cost for sunflower cultivation. The farmers were only required to purchase the seeds.
“But Integrated Tribal Development Agency in Panposh had extended financial support to the below poverty line Scheduled Tribe farmers to purchase the seeds,” P C Saw, the district agriculture officer, Panposh. “About 82 hectares have been cultivated by the BPL ST farmers in Bisra block, who have got the sunflower seeds free of cost where as remaining 18 hectares have been cultivated by other farmers,” he added.
The grown up flowers have brought smiles on the face of hundreds of farmers. “Initially we were a little under-confident about the success of the sunflower plant, but now we are confident of good returns for this season,” said Benudhar Singh, a farmer of Bisra block.