“Rice field with flower bank” model

(VOVWORLD) - An Nhut cooperative in Ba Ria-Vung Tau province is piloting a new cultivation model called “Rice field with flower bank”, where farmers grow flowers along rice field banks to entice useful insects to eat harmful worms and increase the productivity. 
“Rice field with flower bank” model  - ảnh 1 “Rice field with bank” model is piloted in An Nhut Agriculture and Service Cooperative (Photo: Internet)

The model is part of a program to control rice pests and disease by using biotechnology. It was piloted by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) during the 2009-2010 Winter-Spring crop in Cai Lay and Cai Be districts of Tien Giang province.

The model aims to improve the botanical system in rice fields to increase their ecological resistance and reduce the use of pesticides during the early stage of rice cultivation. Farmers participating in the model have been instructed to plant specific kinds of flowers around their rice fields. This saves them 22 USD per hectare for pesticide products plus the cost of spraying.

“Rice field with flower bank” model  - ảnh 2Beds of flowers beautify rice fields help to reduce harmful worms (Photo: Internet)

The program is being widely applied in Ba Ria-Vung Tau. Many farmers say that without using pesticides their rice fields gained 6 tons per hectare with the Summer-Fall crop and 7 tons with the Winter-Spring crop.

Nguyen Huu Sang, a farmer with the An Nhut Cooperative, said: “We don’t have to spend any money growing cotton. We receive more capital to apply new technology in rice production. This is a practical model for farmers.”

According to the farmers who have been participating in the model, trees with yellow or white flowers produce more pollen and attract more useful insects who eat harmful insect.

Tran Van Hai of An Nhut commune said: “Insect pests can’t be found in rice fields where cotton trees are growing. I don’t know why that is, but I know it has benefited us a lot.”

Tran Thi Thien Huong, head of the agriculture section of the provincial Agricultural and Fishery Extension Center, said the model helps reduce environmental pollution, create ecological balance in the fields, protect farmers’ health, and improve their technical know-how, and disease control in rice fields.

She explains: “Farmers in the Mekong Delta region have applied the model to grow flowers around their rice field. This has created a good ecological environment, reduced epidemic diseases in rice fields, and improved product quality.”

The “Rice field with flower bank” model is a breakthrough for rice field restructuring in Ba Ria-Vung Tau which reduces harmful pesticides, preserves the natural environment, develops agriculture sustainably, and boosts people’s incomes.


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