With a thirst for passion, farmer develops new variety of Chinese potato
Pulamanthole (Malappuram): Though Sasidharan from North Paloor has no high qualifications, he managed to develop a new variety of Chinese potato with hard work and keen observation. Even the agriculture experts were amazed to see the enthusiasm of this farmer.
Sasidharan experimented with different indigenous varieties of Chinese potato in order to develop the new variety. He ensured the quality of the new one by continuous study for 8 long years. Normally, indigenous variety of Chinese potato gives harvest upto 3.22 kilogram per square metre. The new variety offers about 100 gram extra production.
The new Chinese potato leaves are purplish green in colour and its stems also are purple in corners. The leaves are also longer when compared to ordinary varieties. The tuber has less wrinkles than other Chinese potato types and its skin can be easily removed by rubbing with hand. It is also noted for its aroma and taste and has high immunity.
The new Chinese potato can be harvested within 135 days of planting. The tuber is thicker and longer and looks attractive. It grows well without adding any fertilizer. The details of the invention has been sent to the National Innovation Foundation in Ahmedabad. It will be officially recognised once the examination and other procedures are complete.
Sasidharan is guided by Dr Asha of Central Tuber Crops Research Institute in Sreekaryam and Dr Susan of Soil Survey Department. He is planning to cultivate the Chinese potato in 30 cents of land and to expand farming to be useful for other farmers in the next phase.
Earlier, Sasidharan had received an honour from the Ministry of Agriculture for developing a high-yielding paddy variety called 'Gopika'. He is the recipient of many other awards for innovations in agriculture sector. He has been into farming for over 30 years. He grows paddy, vegetables and many other crops in his land.