Apart from adding aesthetic value to people’s lives, flowers form an indispensable part of our daily activities. From being used for worshipping at temples and homes to wedding décor and gifts, flowers come in handy for various needs. Some flowers also have medicinal uses. The demand of flowers is always high. Until recent years, North Bengal was completely dependent on the southern districts for their floral needs. However, with the growing demands, farmers have taken to cultivation of flowers, instead of relying solely on the supply from beyond the Ganga.
With the advent of winter, flower cultivation has commenced in different parts of the Dooars region of North Bengal to meet the demand of the local market. Winter is the season of a variety of flowers like marigold, chrysanthemum, dahlia, petunia, calendula, rose and many others. These flowers are now grown in Dooars on a commercial scale by the local farmers.
Means of livelihood
What started off as a seasonal routine, has now assumed the proportion of an alternate means of livelihood. Several farmers have given up cultivation of crops, and have taken up floriculture as full time occupation. And it is not a loss-making venture, as farmers also cater to the needs of the markets in neighbouring districts as well. Space is not an issue as people grow flowering plants in small earthen pots. The demand for flower saplings at nurseries peaks every year during winter.
Places like Maynaguri, Rajgunj, Lataguri and Malbazar in Jalpaiguri district are the hubs of flower cultivation. In Dooars region there are about 200 nurseries currently in operation. Apart from the traditional means of growing flowers, they follow hybrid methods too, to boost their productivity.
Growing flowers indigenously gives customers a sense of assurance to customers regarding their freshness. Unlike the flowers transported from faraway places they also remain fresh for a longer period of time, thus boosting the sales. Truly, North Bengal is now emerging as a flower hub in the state.
All over India, flowers are an integral part of everyday life. It is good for the people of North Bengal.
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