Dhaka,  Wednesday
29 May 2024

Agricultural entrepreneurs thrive in flower cultivation  

Taslimul Hasan Siam, Gaibandha 

Published: 04:54, 27 January 2024

Agricultural entrepreneurs thrive in flower cultivation  

Photo: Messenger

The agricultural landscape in Gaibandha district has witnessed a significant transformation over the past five years, with numerous entrepreneurs capitalizing on the growing demand for flowers. 

According to the Agriculture Department, commercial flower cultivation has surged, particularly in Sadullapur upazila, where the soil and climate favor such endeavors. The district, encompassing seven upazilas, has seen approximately 27 hectares of land dedicated to cultivating high-quality flowers like roses, marigolds, this year.

Sadullapur upazila stands out as a hub for flower cultivation, drawing the attention of hundreds of farmers who find the region's conditions conducive to year-round flower farming. As I visited villages such as Tajnagar, Chakandi, and Raghbendrapur in Idilpur Union, renowned for their flower cultivation, it became evident that farmers were deeply engrossed in tending to their vibrant blossoms. The profitability of flower cultivation has lured these farmers away from traditional crops, prompting a shift towards flowers to reap quicker and more substantial profits.

Not only are local farmers adopting flower cultivation, but the practice has also generated employment opportunities for the local unemployed population. The success of flower farming in Sadullapur upazila has sparked interest among farmers in neighboring areas, leading to the creation of a supportive network where advice is sought from successful entrepreneurs. The intoxicating fragrance of various blooming flowers has become a magnet, attracting curious onlookers and potential buyers alike.

The flower growers in Sadullapur upazila strategically time their main sales around seven festivals each season. Already, sales for Victory Day and the Christian New Year have concluded, and farmers are gearing up for upcoming festivals like Valentine's Day and International Mother Language Day. This cyclical approach ensures a steady income for the flower growers, who are currently immersed in nurturing roses, marigolds, and other flowers in their gardens.

Biplab Mia, a flower grower from Tajnagar village, shared insights into the economics of rose cultivation. Cultivating roses on 2 bigha of land involves an investment of one and a half to two lakh rupees. This includes expenses for seedlings, fertilizers, pesticides, labor wages, and other operational costs. With a lifespan of 6 to 7 years, rose flowers offer a sustainable source of income.

Ashraful Islam from Chaknadi village highlighted the success of marigold cultivation, with 45 cents of land yielding a daily harvest of 2 to 2.5 thousand marigold flowers. Presently, roses are fetching 8 to 10 taka per piece, while marigolds are sold at 7 to 8 hundred taka per thousand. A one-bigha land, during the season, can yield sales worth approximately three to three and a half lakh taka.

The flower gardens in Sadullapur upazila boast a diverse array of flowers, including roses, rosy gandha, gladiolus, chrysanthemum, and marigold. These flowers find their way to wholesalers and traders in various regions, including Dhaka, Rangpur, and Bogra. In response to demand, flowers are meticulously packed in cartons and dispatched via courier services.

Md Khorshed Alam, Deputy Director of Gaibandha District Agriculture Extension Department, emphasized the potential of flower cultivation as a lucrative sector. Entrepreneurs are drawn to the prospect, especially in Sadullapur Upazila, where the Agriculture Office provides continuous guidance and training to ensure the proper cultivation of flowers. The fertile soil of the region further enhances its suitability for flower farming, contributing to the sector's growing popularity and success.