V. Akilan of Ayanbommaiapuram in Vilathikulam taluk has achieved good results in cucumber cultivation using this greenhouse technology. After raising two hybrid cucumber varieties successfully, he has laid his hands on the third variety (Hybrid PS 4800) now.
Earlier, 13 tonnes of hybrid variety cucumber (European delight) was cultivated on a 1,000 sq.m poly-house on his land. He raised 3,600 plants through vertical cultivation technique, for which he spent Rs.1.4 lakh. The raised cucumbers fetched good price in the market. The happy farmer said he earned a profit of Rs.2.11 lakh in a span of 120 days. A kilo of hybrid cucumbers fetched a price of Rs. 27.
“Now the third crop is in good condition and I expect a yield of 14 tonnes,” Mr. Akilan said. He imported seeds for the hybrid cucumber crop from The Netherlands through a dealer in New Delhi. The pre-treated seeds were sown in a specialised medium of soil in bags filled with coir pith, vermi compost and super phosphate mixture. Under fertigation method, water soluble fertilizers were used.
The crops were saved from pest and diseases and micronutrient deficiency through bio-pesticide and bio-fungicide. The first flowering was attained in 40 days after sowing and a week later the crops were ready for harvest. The poly-house is equipped with facilities such as drip irrigation with fertigation, fogger, improved medium of soil for better plant growth and paired rows for cultivation. “I expect to get back my investment in a year. My poly-house is a valuable asset for me,” the farmer said. The efforts of this progressive farmer inspired the horticulture officials who visited his farm.
Official sources said 10 advanced poly-houses are being established in the Pudur block, one of the backward areas in Tuticorin district. A sum of Rs. 113.5 lakh had been earmarked under State Balanced Growth Fund for 2013-14 for setting up poly-houses. Farmers could cultivate vegetables, fruits and flowers in poly-houses. With a two-third subsidy and one-third contribution from the farmers, poly-house farming could be taken up in a big way, the sources said.