Bangladeshis adapt floating farms to survive

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Floating gardening, a form of hydroponics using aquatic plants as the medium, is a traditional cultivation system in Bangladesh practiced for year-round seedling and vegetable production.

This environment-friendly technique provides an extra “piece of land” in the comparative low land beside their paddy fields or when all arable Land of an area is underwater.

In the south-central wetlands of Bangladesh, in dry seasons also farmers use floating gardening for farming vegetables. In dry seasons they raise seedlings on these beds using daily tide and farmers start cropping on the floating beds as soon as water flooded all the lands, without losing any more time.

In addition, over the last 20 years or so, this technology has been widely discussed as an adaptation technology as climate change models predict more rain and longer, frequent floods in this part of the world.

This old age agro-practice was originated in the south-central wetlands of Bangladesh, namely in Barisal, Gopalganj, Madaripur, and Pirojpur districts.

Since around 2000, this indigenous system has been extensively promoted by many NGOs and the Government of Bangladesh’s agencies, particularly in the southern parts of Bangladesh and other areas of the country. Kuddus Miah, a farmer at Banaripara in Barishal Division, said he has made bed for the Papaya plant in his area from July to August.

Md Kamal, another farmer at the same region, said he will continue doing the floating gardening, adding that he used to farm Pumpkin, Sweet Pumpkin, Eggplant, papaya, Pepper, Cauliflower etc in the floating bed.

Mr. Jewel, a local journalist in Barishal Division, urged the government and local officials to train framers on how to use modern methods and to maintain communications with them.

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