In 2015, Tannie Zaulda, 48, of Brgy. Julita, Libacao, Aklan made a trial planting of native ginger between his Señorita bananas in his two-hectare integrated farm. From the 120 kilos of seed pieces that he planted, he was able to harvest three tons of rhizomes which gave him a net profit of P188,000. Encouraged by the good income, he planted 45,000 hills of ginger this year.
Of course, Señorita banana has been his main money maker in previous years up to this time. He has 3,500 hills of this variety. In seven months after planting, the first bunch is harvested from each hill, followed by two more from the succeeding suckers. Thus, in one year, he can harvest three bunches from each hill. He sells his bananas at a wholesale price of P10 per kilo to buyers in Aklan, Iloilo and Capiz.
In addition to Señorita banana and ginger, Tannie has also planted 100 hills of lakatan and 150 hills of latundan bananas in addition to high-value fruit trees. He is one of the farmers being assisted by the local government unit of Libacao with the technical advice from Aklan State University through its Extension and Community Services Unit.—MELPHA M. ABELLO