D. Basu, S. Banerjee, R. Goswami
The potential of farmers to informally share material, information, knowledge and skills, especially in poor areas, has received relatively little attention. A study was conducted in the Southern blocks of the South 24 Parganas district to assess the extent of a farmer-led innovation – the practice of cultivating vegetables on ail (bund). In the early 1990s, Nimpith Krishi Vigyan Kendra provided technical support to cultivate vegetables in the upland regions during post-monsoon to winter, but as only 10% of the available land was upland, farmers started growing vegetables on the ail of paddy fields after raising and broadening the earthen boundary of the fields previously used to demarcate an area, conserve soil and water and provide easy access to the fields. On average, 5-10% of the field was available for vegetable cultivation. The farmers who first received training from the KVK developed the practice of ail cultivation. They modified and developed some practices including crop and varietal choice, spacing, nutrient use, intercropping and multi-tier cropping systems, according to their individual situations. Some of these farmers formed farmer extension groups and undertook across group exposure visits. As a result, farmers in neighbouring villages and onlookers also adopted the practice. An income of Rs 15,000/bund (1×400 m) per annum is reported. Both agricultural research and extension can draw lessons from the case by experimenting with this model for scaling up the extension service and mainstreaming the extension service delivery mechanism.
Basu, D., Banerjee, S. and Goswami, R. (2009). VEGETABLE CULTIVATION ON AIL (BUND): A SUCCESSFUL FARMER-LED TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER. Acta Hortic. 809, 155-160
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2009.809.13
CDR environment, coastal agro-ecosystem, farmer-to-farmer, Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), qualitative research, resource-poor farmer

Acta Horticulturae