Kerala

Bountiful harvest for Sadanandapuram GHSS

Students and teachers of Government Higher Secondary School, Sadanandapuram with Mullakkara Ratnakaran, MLA, at the corn farm before harvest.

Students and teachers of Government Higher Secondary School, Sadanandapuram with Mullakkara Ratnakaran, MLA, at the corn farm before harvest.  

Students and teachers of the school cultivate corn at its half-acre farm

Corn may not be very popular among farmers in Kerala, but the students and teachers of Government Higher Secondary School, Sadanandapuram, have cultivated the crop and received a good yield from their half-acre farm.

The school has also conducted a corn festival in connection with the harvest since their farm, full of golden tassels, has been drawing visitors from many parts.

Festival

During the festival, the school authorities have prepared some traditional corn dishes, giving many students a chance to taste them for the first time.

“Last year we had taken our students to Kanyakumari for a one-day trip and there they saw huge heaps of corn near local farms. Many of them wanted to know how it was cultivated and so we decided to try it on our campus,” says Mohanlal P, teacher.

The students and teachers have actively participated and monitored various phases in the farming, right from sowing seeds, while the Vettikavala Krishi Bhavan and Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme workers from the Madathiyara ward offered all assistance.

At first corn was used as a border crop for paddy farming and the seeds were collected.

“Many of our students had no idea about the farming of various crops, including paddy. So we made sure that they are involved in the entire process and they get a chance to watch all activities, including the preparation of land, sowing, weeding and harvesting. Since corn usually don’t get serious pest attacks, it’s comparatively easy to cultivate it. We used a mixture of cow dung and oil cake as the main manure and received a yield over 70 kg,” he says.

Agriculture club

The agriculture club in the school has been conducting various projects that include paddy farming and vegetable cultivation using drip irrigation.

For Onam the school had cultivated tapioca, colocasia, taro, ginger, purple yam, beans, tomato, eggplant, green chilli, spinach, snake gourd, ivy gourd, bottle gourd, cucumber and cauliflower.

The school is keen on promoting organic farming and last year they had exhibited the yield and honoured student farmers after the harvest.

“Not just club members, but all students are part of our farming projects. We feel it’s very important to introduce them to farming so that they can understand and value our agricultural culture. We only take a break during summer months due to the scarcity of water and this year we are planning to start cultivation around May,” he adds.

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Printable version | Apr 4, 2020 9:14:45 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/ghss-sadanandapuram-shows-the-way/article30932201.ece

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