Korphu Gewog’s effort to revive cardamom
Surjaman Thapa, TrongsaDec 31 2012
If you visit Korphu Gewog in Trongsa, you will right away notice cardamom plants growing around tiny houses. The plants indicate the villagers’ effort to revive cardamom, their prized cash crop they once lost to a disease called wilt and blight.
Korphu Gewog has over 200 households.
The re-plantation programme of cardamom is slowly taking shape and some of the villagers have, in fact, already started reaping benefit.
One of the farmers, Rinchenmo, has harvested cardamom once already. It has been a year since she first planted the cardamom. “I fear that I might lose my plants to disease again,” she said. She had lost her entire plantation to wilt and blight earlier.
Rinchemo is not the only one who is worried about losing her plants to disease. Most of the villagers fear that the effort and expanses they have put into re-plantation maybe in vain.
The disease had not only affected Korphu but almost all the cardamom growing Dzongkhags in the Country.
Cardamom is usually planted in June and July. It is ready for harvest in about one to two years. The harvest months fall in October and November. Then begins the drying process after which it is ready to be exported.
The cardamom re-plantation began in 2009. Last year, the RNR Centre in Korphu also distributed around 3,000 saplings of improved variety to the farmers of Nimshong village.
Besides cardamom plantation, people of Korphu also plant a variety of vegetable, fruit and other cash crops.