Agri Business

Theni farmer cooks rice, banana intercrop

L N Revathy Coimbatore | Updated on January 24, 2018

Growing banana in rice fields would probably have been dismissed as “unthinkable” by traditional farmers, but M Murali, an agricultural graduate from Muthurapuram of Theni District dared to experiment with it in his father’s farm.

His success not only encouraged others in that belt to try it, but brought officials from the horticulture department scrambling to see for themselves.

After graduating in agriculture, Murali did a programme in Business Management before returning to his native village to take care of his father’s fields.

His degree in agriculture gave him the confidence to try out some innovative practices.

He did what no ne had done banana growing belt of Theni by taking to cultivation of banana as an inter crop in rice field.

Murali tried this across the 21-acre holding, raising the bed by 1.5 feet and going for tissue culture planting material of Cavendish banana.

He planted 1210 tissue culture plantings per acre.

Drip irrigation and fertigation techniques helped him conserve water up to 50 per cent and get a four-fold increase in income.

“If we had gone with just the rice crop, our profit would have been limited to ₹50000 per annum. By going for the intercrop, we were able to get an extra income of ₹2.50 lakh,” Murali said.

Murali incidentally got back-end subsidy from the Tamil Nadu government and finance support from Federal Bank.

And a high-profile official came all the way from Delhi to take a look: Ranglal Jamuda, Secretary, Ministry of Food Processing Industries, Government of India, dropped in on a recent visit to Theni.

Published on July 28, 2015

Follow us on Telegram, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Linkedin. You can also download our Android App or IOS App.

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

You May Also Like