7 3R projects increase HVC quality planting materials, mushroom spawns and fruiting bags, vermicast production in selected areas

Seven projects on quality planting materials funded through the DA-BAR’s Resiliency Response Research for Development (3R) program reported an increase in quality planting materials of high value crops (HVC), mushroom, and vermicast production in selected areas during the completion review held on 12 August 2022 via video conference. 

The 3R program utilized mature research and development technologies to increase and sustain food production, availability, and accessibility in the country at a time when heightened restrictions were enforced to curb the spread of COVID-19. 


Increased banana planting materials through tissue culture

The University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) and DA-Bureau of Plant Industry-Davao National Crop Research, Development, and Production Support Center (BPI-DNCRDPSC) utilized tissue culture technology to increase the planting materials of selected banana cultivars. Both research institutions also trained their respective partner banana growers and beneficiaries on the proper production and management of these plants to ensure a good quality produce. 

UPLB produced 11,520 tissue-cultured Lakatan and Cardaba banana seedlings. They also tapped the tissue culture laboratories in Mindanao to produce an additional 71,405 plantlets. These were distributed to DA-Cagayan Valley, DA-Central Luzon, DA-CALABARZON, and DA-BPI. 

DA-BPI-DNCRDPSC produced 47,466 Cardaba, 2,300 Dippig, 25,100 Lakatan tissue-cultured planting materials which were distributed to farmer-beneficiaries in Davao region. 


Increased production of vegetable seeds and seedlings

The DA-Cagayan Valley increased the production of quality vegetable seedlings from 50,000 to 100,000 pieces every cycle. The vegetable seedling production used seedling tray and other indigenous or used materials under protective covering. 

Two hundred seventy four and eight tenths kilograms of open pollinated variety vegetable seeds, 429,000 pieces assorted seedlings, 11 kg indigenous vegetable seeds, and 1,576 pieces of malunggay and katuray seedlings and cuttings were produced on-station. While, 31.34 kg assorted OPV vegetables seeds and 31,400 pieces seedlings were produced on farm. 

A total of 1,576 youth and household beneficiaries benefited from this project. 


Increased quality planting materials for sweetpotato, ginger, and mushroom

DA-Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) increased the production of sweetpotato and ginger quality planting materials, as well as oyster and shiitake mushroom spawn grains and fruiting bags. 

A total of 43,900 sweetpotato single node cuttings were produced, of which  40,900 single node cuttings were distributed. While for ginger, 6,749 seed pieces of ginger were distributed. Further, 2,000 mushroom spawn grains were produced and distributed; and 8,000 fruiting bags were produced for technology demonstration. 

Rapid multiplication techniques and packages of technologies were used to mass propagate the three commodities. Farmer-partners were also trained on the production of sweet potato, ginger, and mushroom.


Outscaled mushroom production

To augment the income of farmers, the DA-Central Luzon and DA-Cagayan Valley mass produced spawns and fruiting bags for oyster and straw mushroom, respectively. 

DA-Central Luzon utilized the mushroom tissue culture using rice wash sucrose agar as culture media, rapid multiplication through spawning, and fruiting bag production using substrates tested and proven to have high biological efficiency. 

Twenty nine organized farmer and non-farmer groups in Nueva Ecija, Tarlac, Pampanga, and Zambales each received 2,000 fruiting bags of oyster mushrooms. They were trained on mushroom tissue culture, spawn, and fruiting bag production, as well as mushroom processing and basic business management. 

DA-Cagayan Valley outscaled the container straw mushroom production which benefited 100 households and 83 technology adopters in the region. A total of 4,252.8 kg of fresh mushrooms were produced by the household beneficiaries, while 1,315.82 kg were produced by technology adopters. They are also trained to produce straw mushroom through container cultivation, which can increase their monthly income by an average of 9%. 

The container straw mushroom production used agro-waste (rice straw, munggo hull, and banana leaves) and other household scraps (paper, paper boxes) as production substrate.


Mass produced vermicast in Quirino

Vermicast is a good soil conditioner that can be used as natural fertilizer in rough soils. It enhances seedlings growth rate, increases root numbers and biomass, and improves root stress tolerance which lead to earlier flowering of plants. 

The Quirino State University upgraded its existing vermifacilities through the construction of 10 big vermibeds. Three hundred twenty eight farmers benefited from the 1,855 canvas of vermicast and vermicompost produced for a more efficient production of HVC and vegetables in the province. 

The combination of banana stalk and cow manure substrates emerged as the best substrates used in the production. The 3:1 banana stalk to cow manure doubled the number of worms. Both substrates are also readily available in the community. (### Rena S. Hermoso)