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University seeds vegetable revolution in Maldives

A silent revolution in vegetable and fruit farming is taking place on Vattaru island of the Maldives, thanks to the enthusiasm of a civil engineer and technology back up of Kerala Agricultural University (KAU).

Having noticed the farming pattern and climate in the islands, E.C. Manoharan succeeded in convincing people that the seeds and planting materials from Kerala, with which the islands share an identical environment, will be more suitable for them than the seeds imported from Europe. He got in touch with scientists at KAU and selected varieties of fruits and vegetables. The greatest surprise was watermelon. When he heard about seedless watermelon varieties Swarna and Shonima, he contacted Dr. T. Pradeep Kumar who developed them and took seeds there.

The islands being a tourist destination, the seedless watermelons sold like hotcakes. “Besides watermelon, I promoted the cultivation of bitter gourd, bottle gourd, brinjal and cucumber. The cultivation was in 40 hectares. All these varieties give good yields," Mr Manoharan said.

Read more at the Deccan Chronicle

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