Farmers of Vadodara district are re-adopting the cultivation of Kashmiri roses along with native ones
Progressive farmer Vishal Patel says, since local roses are very fragrant, there is a great demand in worship and other occasions
Farmers of Vadodara district are re-adopting the cultivation of Kashmiri roses along with native ones. Vishal Patel, who cultivates flowers in Bil village near Vadodara, says the tide seems to have turned and the fragrance is winning against sustainability due to the demand.
Vishal Patel's family has been involved in floriculture since its inception. He says flower growers in Vadodara district were earlier so attracted to Kashmiri rose cultivation that they uprooted native roses and planted Kashmiri roses in the fields. Kashmiri roses are more durable and lighter in weight for making garlands compared to native ones.
Demand for this specialty has grown significantly and as a result farmers are now turning towards cultivation of native roses along with the Kashmiri ones. Vishal Patel himself has grown native roses instead of Kashmiri in 5 vighas of land.
Previously half-blooming native roses had to be picked and sent to the markets early in the morning after about midnight because of their low durability. Now the tide has turned. Weaving is now done early in the morning to be sent to local markets. While desi roses are picked in the evening and sent by air or other means to distant markets including Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Rajasthan and arrives fresh in markets there in the morning.
Kashmiri and local are both roses varieties but compared to Kashmiri, the native rose is more fragrant. That is why fragrant native roses are very famous in Dev Puja, religious festivals, flower Chadars offered in the Dargah, death occasions, tributes and others. The demand for it has increased and there is a shortage in the market, says Vishal Patel.
According to him, flower growers in villages like Darapura, Sokhada, Patod in Vadodara and Padra talukas have partially replanted native roses in their farms. There is an expectation that the cultivation of desi roses will also increase in Karjan taluka.
The white fragrant flowers of Paras are also in good demand in the flower market. In Bil village, florists have grown this flowers in about 100 vighas of land. According to Vishal Patel, the Paras of Vadodara goes as far as to the markets of Hyderabad, Chennai and Bengaluru. In distant markets, flowers are packed in ice and sent to corrugated boxes to maintain their freshness.
The Horticulture Department of the State Government promotes floriculture. Yogeshbhai, Horticulture Officer, Office of the Deputy Director of Horticulture, Vadodara, said that in order to encourage floriculture, small and marginal farmers as well as large farmers are given planting aid per hectare as per the prescribed criteria. It is necessary to contact the office for detailed information.
Flowers with a variety of colors and scents, shapes are fun to talk about. Cultivation of flowers has amazing potential. That is why the state government encourages it through schemes. There has been a tradition of floriculture in talukas like Vadodara, Karjan, Padra of Vadodara district. Farmers like Vishal Patel are aware of the market trends in this field. However, it is imperative that each farmer analyses the flower market trends on his own and makes the right decision to change the crop.