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Lotus Cultivation Boosts Farmers' Income in a Village Near Sholinghur

For nearly a decade, a lake in Ammanneri village near Sholinghur town, Tamil Nadu has boosted lotus production in the village, supplementing a group of farmers' normal income from paddy cultivation.

Shivam Dwivedi
Lotus Cultivation Boosts Farmers' Income in a Village Near Sholinghur
Lotus Cultivation Boosts Farmers' Income in a Village Near Sholinghur

Lotus plants thrive on moist soil, which is typically a mix of loam and clay. They require at least six hours of sunlight per day and should be fertilized sparingly in the first year.

Ammanneri, a border village linking Ranipet and Tiruvallur district, is dotted with extensive stretches of paddy fields, primarily irrigated by the village lake. The majority of farmers cultivate paddy at least twice a year. However, a small group of them have just begun to experiment with lotus cultivation in the lake, taking advantage of the lake's water all year.

"The lake has never dried up since the 2015 floods." "Its main water source is nearby hillocks and large lakes," stated K. Girirajan, head of Ammanneri village panchayat. The lake, which covers 15 acres, is mostly utilized for irrigation, residential water supply, and lotus farming.

Because public auctions for fishing in the lake are prohibited, a small number of farmers dump seeds in the lake on mutual agreement, with technical assistance from the panchayat and Department of Agriculture authorities. "Seeds are usually dropped in the lake during the rainy season, which includes the southwest monsoon." "Flowers are harvested once every three months," stated farmer K. Vembu.

Farmers claim that keeping water up to five feet deep is essential for lotus growth because its roots grow deep. Lotus farming has flourished in the lake because it is around 15 feet deep and contains nearly 90% water throughout the year.

Lotus from the lake is preferred by temples in Sholinghur, Tiruttani, Nagari, and Tirupati. Farmers claim that lotus is also used to make herbal products. According to the farmers, lotus is also used to make several Ayurvedic remedies.

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