4-10 July 2014 #714

Monsoon mania

Basil Edward Teo and Louise Evangeline Ng

Erratic weather patterns due to the El Niño effect from the Pacific Ocean has weakened and delayed the onset of the monsoon. Ideally, paddy fields are supposed to be planted with saplings and soaked in the abundance of rain water by the end of June. Yet, farmers had to turn to alternative methods to irrigate their land midway through last week. Meanwhile, many have also resorted to planting crops such as cabbage and carrots, which require less water than rice, in order to minimise the risk of a poor harvest.

For the month of June, farmers across central Kathmandu braved the searing sun and continued to ply their trade. Here are some photos of monsoon planting shot during the last week of June.

A rice farmer from Bhaktapur beams with pride as she shows off her rice saplings.

A team of farmers in Nalin Chowk, Bhaktapur work together to ready their land for planting. While some till the land, others spread pesticides and remove weeds and waste from the field.

After much hard work, the land is ploughed and ready to be planted with rice saplings.

Just after dawn on 24 June, 2014, residents of Sallaghari, Bhaktapur work to till their land before planting rice saplings.

Farmers work to ready their farmland before planting rice saplings.

A farmer in Bhaktapur moves about his land to remove weeds and waste from the paddy fields before irrigating them with water from a nearby river.

Farming is hard work, especially so under the scorching summer sun. Farmers make sure they hydrate themselves regularly throughout the day.

After much work since the break of dawn, the land is ready to be planted with rice saplings by late morning.

Although the month of June has been a dry one, short bouts of thunderstorms still allowed farmers to irrigate and plant small plots of their land.

Asadh 15 traditionally marks the end of the paddy planting season and is celebrated throughout the country.

A young boy carefully wades into the paddy field before the start of the celebration.

Participants get dirty with mud in the Asadh 15 celebrations in Banepa.

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