Daijiworld Media Network - Kundapur (SP)
Kundapur, Jan 15: Failing to get the support of the departments or the government, the once famous chrysanthemum flowers of Hemmadi here have now been moving towards total decimation. These flowers had earned a niche for themselves on account of the geographical benefits, climate and for being a unique species. The flowers are just withering, stripped of their traditional glory due to the Covid restrictions during the last two years. They are now fighting for survival as their cultivators are facing huge losses.
This flower blooms between January and March every year. The flowers bloom well when the climate is cool. The Marnakatte annual festival is a big market for the chrysanthemum growers. The devotees of Lord Brahmalingrshwara of Marnakatte, as a tradition, offer a basketful of Hemmadi chrysanthemums to the deity.
Prashant from Hemmadi who has been doing chrysanthemum cultivation for the last 16 years, says that he spent Rs 1.75 lac this season towards labor, manure, pesticides etc. However, he is now worried about selling the flowers because of the ban on festivals. He employs 30 laborers everyday to harvest the flowers. The farmers have met the local MLA and requested him to allow the festivals with certain restrictions. Now they are waiting with their fingers crossed for the decision.
Will these unique flowers, which are still known for their beauty and fragrance, survive the corona scare? Time alone can tell.
The chrysanthemum farmers have an association of their own. Many opine that the agricultural science centers should have conducted a detailed study on this flower species and communicated its importance and uniqueness to the public. If this had been done, the cultivators would not have been in doldrums now, they say.