Farmers in Ladakh take to greenhouses for better yield

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Ladakh, Mar 12 (ANI): Farmers in Ladakh have taken to greenhouses, overcoming the hazards of harsh winters in a novel way.

Over 90 per cent of Ladakh's population is dependent on agriculture. But very short summers and long winters make it hard for farmers to grow vegetables even to sustain themselves.

They now farm in greenhouses, ensuring availability of vegetables throughout the year.

Farmers say that the main advantage of having a greenhouse is the availability of green leafy vegetables throughout the year, especially in the winter season.

"We get green leafy fresh vegetables even during the months of January, February and March. We want that more greenhouses should be promoted so that more people benefit from these," said Gulam Rasool, a farmer.

The concept of greenhouses was introduced in the region so that farmers can overcome the harsh climate.

The concept of gereenhouses was developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation at its unit in Leh. It was adopted by the Army in Kargil by the Indian Army after the 1999 standoff with Pakistan.

The Horticulture Department in the region has popularized as the method has dramatically transformed vegetable yield in the region.

The project was an immediate success in Ladakh as it receives good sunlight for an average of 325 days in a year because of its unique location.

"We have seen that solar energy has a lot of potential in Ladakh. We have tried to develop farming and we are encouraging farmers to grow vegetables.

This concept was developed in 1998 to make greenhouses using local material," said Tashi Thokmat, Deputy Director, Ladakh Environment and Health Organization (LEHO).

Vegetables like cucumber, eggfruit and capsicum, which were not grown in this region before, are now a common sight in the marketplaces of the mountainous region. By Jigmet Vangchuk (ANI)

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