Grow 10 papaya plants to earn Rs 15,000 per month
If you have 10 papaya plants at home, Rs 15,000 can be earned every month. As papaya is nutrient-rich and is used as an ingredient in medicines, it is of high demand in the market and fetches a high price.
At present, papaya fetches Rs 50-60 per kilogram. The farmers receive between Rs 30-40. One papaya weighs between 750 grams and three kilograms. More than hundred people in Mararikkulam and Kanjikkuzhi areas depend on papaya farming for their livelihood.
Papaya can be cultivated in any weather. Its seeds and saplings can be used for propagation.
Dig holes at a distance of two metres and sterilise them by adding lime or by burning dry leaves.
After one week, put cow dung, bone manure, neem cake or chicken droppings as base fertiliser.
Plant saplings in a slanting position to ensure better yield.
Also apply fertilisers once in a month for a good yield.
Fruits can be harvested seven months after planting. It can be harvested for upto two years.
Papaya can be intercropped with coconut, banana and vegetables also.
The major threat faced by papaya trees is the attack of viruses. Organic remedies like No Virus, Perfect and Curab can be used to prevent virus menace.
Biodegradable household waste such as fish, vegetables and food waste are good fertilisers for papaya. Harvesting is also easy and farmers can pluck the fruits without employing labourers.
Drip irrigation and precision farming are ideal for largescale papaya cultivation, said Mararikkulam based papaya farmer Nishad.
Sapling @ Rs 10-50
Saplings of local papaya varieties cost Rs 10. Papaya varieties like Selection One, CO One, Honey Dew, Coimbatore Papaya and Soorya are priced between Rs 10 and Rs 20. Red Lady papaya sapling is priced between Rs 30-50.
Red Lady is used for large-scale farming. The major advantage of Red Lady papaya is that the ripe fruit has a longer shelf life, said papaya sapling entrepreneur Sreekumar Kooppillil.