Strawberry cultivation in coco peat media in poly houses in Srinagar
Irfan Ahmed Wani, a floriculturist and owner of KVB Agro Farms in Srinagar, Jammu
The Challenge: The climate and soil conditions in Jammu and Kashmir are conducive for strawberry cultivation. However, high cost of land discouraged small and marginal farmers from taking up
- Wani's proposal for raising a nursery of strawberries on coco peat media in poly houses was approved with a grant assistance of 7 5.65 lakh under the Rural Innovation Fund
- Initially suitable planting materials i.e. mother root stock were imported from California, which produces world-class strawberries
- Plants were sown in the foot-wide troughs that were pressed into the top of each bed, lined with fabric, and filled with coco peat media and placed under poly houses
- Growing strawberries in coco peat, a natural and renewable resource produced from coconut husk, help popularise the concept of soil less farming in the state.
- Coco peat mimics soil's ability to hold water. It is environment friendly and does not require any fumigation unlike soil.
- The multi tier system of cultivation ensures better utilization of space and improves yeild.
- The availability of local resources and low cost planting material will coax small and marginal farmers to opt for Strawberry cultivation in the valley.
- The project is profitable, it ensures low income and high returns.