Location: Barishal and Dhaka
Source: A24 Agency
Restrictions: A24 Subscribers
Floating gardening, a form of hydroponics using aquatic plants as the medium, is a traditional cultivation system in Bangladesh practiced for year-round seedling and vegetable production. This environment-friendly technique provides extra “piece of land” in the comparative low land beside their paddy fields or when all arable Land of an area is under water. In the south-central wetlands of Bangladesh, in dry seasons also farmers use floating gardening for farming vegetables. In dry seasons they raise seedlings on these beds using daily tide and farmers start cropping on the floating beds as soon as water flooded all the lands, without losing any more time. In addition, over the last 20 years or so, this technology has been widely discussed as an adaptation technology as climate change models predict more rain and longer, frequent floods in this part of the world. This old age agro-practice was originated in the south-central wetlands of Bangladesh, namely in Barisal, Gopalganj, Madaripur, and Pirojpur districts. Since around 2000, this indigenous system has been extensively promoted by many NGOs and Government of Bangladesh’s agencies, particularly in the southern parts of Bangladesh and other areas of the country. Kuddus Miah, a farmer at Banaripara in Barishal Division, said he has made bed for the Papaya plant in his area from July to Agust. Md Kamal, another farmer at the same region, said he will continue doing the floating gardening, adding that he used to farm Pumpkin, Sweet Pumpkin, Eggplant, papaya, Pepper, Cauliflower etc in the floating bed. Mr. Jewel, a local journalist at in Barishal Division, urged the government and local officials to train framers on how to use modern methods and to maintain communications with them.
– Soundbite: Kuddus Miah, farmer at Banaripara in Barishal Division
“ We have made bed here for the Papaya plants. We generally cultivate on floating beds from July to August. As this land is comparatively low we kept this bed here. This is 4.5 feet wide and 90 feet long. When tidal flow comes the bed float and after tidal flow gone the bed again goes down.We are working for planting on the bed.”
– Soundbite: Md Kamal, farmer at Banaripara in Barishal Division
“ We are doing this for the decades and will go on coming future too. We used to farm Pumpkin, Sweet Pumpkin, Eggplant, papaya, Pepper, Cauliflower etc in the floating bed. Now here we have Cucumber, Eggplant, Papaya, in that bed have Red Spinach and different others. After cutting paddy, we will make floating on those lands also for farming vegetables.
– Soundbite: Mr. Jewel, local journalist at Banaripara in Barishal Division
“They are doing this Floating Farming or ‘Dhap’ with their own ways. Through us they try to draw the attention of the Govt. to help them by training as they can using modern methods. But they complain, Govt. officials do not maintain communications with them. Farmers want to know how to collect fertilizers and seeds. They produce the seeds in the leaf with their own method in their home which they further use for the plantation in the floating beds. So they are living their live through farming using their own methods.”