Kerala

On a 13-acre Wayanad park, rice is the star

Rice varieties showcased at the Rice Park Knowledge Centre on the slopes of Adumari hills near Mananthavady in Wayanad district.

Rice varieties showcased at the Rice Park Knowledge Centre on the slopes of Adumari hills near Mananthavady in Wayanad district.  

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Organic variants from all over India will be showcased till November 25

A group of organic farmers in Wayanad have opened a Rice Park Knowledge Centre to showcase the diversity of the crop. The park, the first such in the country, is set up on 13 acres of terrace landscape on the slopes of Adumari hills at Kattikulam, near Mananthavady, in the district. It is an initiative by Project Earthworm, a company set up by T.V. Jayakrishnan, A. Sampreeth, C.S. Sooraj, and K. Linesh.

Rice varieties of different hues give a unique appearance to the park. Forty-eight types of rice from all over the country are grown on small plots here. While an indigenous aromatic variety like Mullankayama has golden panicles, Kalabhath, a black rice variant, is dark purple.

Black and gold

Black rice varieties here include Chakkarakayama, Palliyaral, Seolimukil, Black Jasmine, Burma Black, Assom Black, Kalamalli Phule, and Kakisala. Varieties such as Mukura, Kunkumasalai, Sindhoorsalai, and Rakthashali have golden red panicles.

Long and short of it

Jeerakasala, Jeeraka Chembavu, and Jeera Phul too have a golden hue. “Rice fields are not just places where rice is grown. It has visual appeal, and aesthetic and cultural values too. We are trying to impart them to the youngsters,” says Linesh, coordinator of the project. There is the height factor too. While the Valiyachennellu is 6 feet tall, the Kuriyakazhama plant grows only up to 3 feet. The park has a rare variety of rice called Tulsi bhog, which bears the smallest rice grain in the world, Linesh says. Medicinal rice varieties like Valiyachennellu, Rakthashali, Palliyaral are also showcased here.

“The park is an attempt to re-establish the bond between rice fields and consumers, avoiding middlemen. Many attempts are being made to strengthen the relationship between organic farmers and consumers. But we believe in establishing a strong bond with soil and consumers,” he adds.

For sale

Different varieties of rice and rice-based value-added products are available at the park for sale at an affordable price. The park will be open for public till November 25, after which the crop will be harvested.

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Printable version | Dec 8, 2019 3:52:45 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/on-a-13-acre-wayanad-park-rice-is-the-star/article30030514.ece

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