Sundergarh: At a time, when people are turning away from farming, a 32-year-old ITI technician set a good precedent for others by taking to a unique kind of farming- farm pond farming.
Meet Hirod Patel of Ratanpur in Tangarapali block in Sundergarh district, who adopted an integrated farming system after trying his luck in various sectors.
Patel who belongs to an agrarian family, used to help his father in agricultural activities.
He started his career in agriculture on an experimental basis four years ago. Now, he has emerged as a successful farmer with an annual turnover of around Rs 10 to 12 lakh.
Patel now took to horticulture, floriculture and pisciculture in farm ponds besides paddy farming on his 14 acres of land. Besides, he adopted a novel idea of using the pond bunds for agricultural purposes. He planted saplings of bottle gourd on the bunds and installed trellis made of GI wires atop the pond for the vines to climb.
“The bunds remained unused while the ponds were engaged in fish production. I thought of using the bunds efficiently and started growing climber plants like botter gourds on both sides of the pond,” Patel said.
From this, he earned around Rs 30,000 in the first batch of harvest recently.
His fish yielding from two ponds which he dug with the help of the soil conservation and watershed development wing of the Agriculture Department also fetches a good return. He said that his pisciculture gives him Rs 80,000 annually.
Patel said he used his low-lying land in fish farming as the land remained unused for most of the time due to the accumulation of rainwater.
Various fruit plants like coconut trees, numerous bananas, berry, guava, mangoes and other trees are also part of his farming, which are growing in full swing and will bear fruits soon.