Vegetable cultivation helps Ja-Nyen-Ma’s farmers in Trashigang earn extra income

Venturing into vegetable cultivation has proven to be a means of earning some income besides paddy cultivation for farmers in Ja-Nyen-Ma village, Trashigang. They are earning a good income by selling the vegetables at nearby schools and Sunday markets. However, they are facing challenges as wild animals are damaging their crops.

The favourable weather conditions in Ja-Nyen-Ma village, Phongmey Gewog, help farmers grow any kind of vegetables.

Although farmers cultivate most vegetables, garlic and cucumber are grown on a large scale. Fruits such as banana, guava, orange, and pomegranate are also grown in the village.

Farmers said the early production of cucumber and other vegetables has helped them earn better prices in the market.

They supply their farm produce to Dungtse Central School in Phongmey Gewog and to the Trashigang Sunday market.

“I cultivated garlic on a large scale, and this time, I harvested around 500 kilograms. This earned me Nu 40,000. Moreover, I got Nu35,000 from selling beans and cucumber. In total, I have earned around Nu 70,000 this time,” said Tenzin Phuntsho, a farmer.

“I used to earn around Nu 90,000 to 100,000 depending on the production. This time, I could not earn much from selling beans. Normally, I harvest four to five times, but this time, I harvested only three times. My green chili saplings are not fully matured, so I have sold just a few kilogrammes. I earned around Nu 30,000 from selling cucumber,” said Sonam Choden, another farmer.

However, the farmers are having a difficult time guarding their farmland. To keep wild animals at bay, they are using bamboo and green nets.

“We are facing challenges due to wild animals such as wild boar, porcupine, and monkey. We would be grateful if the government provided us with chain link fencing. If so, we will be able to cultivate vegetables on the uncultivated land. We will also plan to supply vegetables to Thimphu,” said Yeshi Phuntsho, a farmer.

“We buy bamboo from the village, paying Nu 50-100 per piece. We hired some workers, and it took two to three days for fencing. It does help to some extent. We must guard our crops,” said Sonam Choden, another farmer.

“Farmers are facing challenges with wild animals as the village is small and surrounded by forest. In the 13th Five-Year Plan, the district administration has asked each gewog to identify and submit three areas where there is a need for chain link fencing. We have planned accordingly,” said Norbu Jamtsho, Agriculture Extension Supervisor of Phongmey Gewog.

Appreciating their hard work and commitment, officials said they have been providing farming materials and fruit saplings.

Ja-Nyen-Ma village has 18 households cultivating vegetables and fruits on around 20 acres of land.

Sonam Darjay, Trashigang

Edited by Tshering Zam

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