The rise in temperature has caused damage on agriculture sector. But farmers in Talavadi hills seems to be lucky as they are feeling less heat and getting good price for the vegetables, especially cabbage.
Favourable temperature in the hills has helped the farmers to cultivate cabbage, potato, carrot, beans, beetroot, lady’s finger, small onion and tomatoes in their land that varies from one acre to 2.5 acre.
Adding to it, marigold, tapioca, sugarcane and a few other crops are also cultivated in the hills. Traders procure the produce farm from the farmers and sell it at markets in Erode, Mettupalayam, Coimbatore and in Kerala.
According to S. Manickam, President of theTalavadi Farmers’ Association, poor monsoon, prevailing intense heat and shortage of water led to drop in the cultivation areas. He also mentioned that traders purchase vegetables from farmers at cabbage (Rs. 12 to Rs. 14 a kg), tomato (Rs. 28 to Rs. 30 a kg) and beans (Rs. 50 to Rs. 55 a kg). Crops are now cultivated in less than 500 acre.
Cabbage is mostly purchased for Rs. 2 to Rs. 4 a kg from the farmers. Later on, they started cultivating alternative vegetables which led to drop in cabbage cultivation.
Gurusamy of Gumatapuram, who owns two acre, stated that currently 25,000 cabbage plants were cultivated in his field and there is also a good demand for the produce. It is a 90-day crop and the climate is not conducive now.
He further added, “After harvesting the crop now, we will start cultivating cabbage only during rainy season that begins from August.”
Other farmers said that in the absence of check dams, rain water from the hills enter Chikkahole Dam in Chamrajnagar district of Karnataka.
V. Ramadurai of Susaipuram said, “Five to seven small check dams were constructed without storage facilities and water from Neithalapuram easily enters the dam. If rain water is stored, farming activities could be done throughout the year which will ensure the livelihood of farmers.
Interestingly, the hill has been receiving good rainfall in the last three days and farmers expressed hope for a good harvest season.