ALBAY, Philippines – The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda) in Bicol is considering building an agricultural learning site for Bicolano farmers at the successful “gulayan sa barangay” organic vegetable farm in Barangay Salugan, Camalig town here.
The seven-hectare organic vegetable plantation in Salugan village owned by the family of chairwoman Shiela “Kap Shie” Dino gained popularity after the idle land was planted with a variety of vegetables.
The ‘gulayan sa barangay’ provided free vegetables for residents to ensure they could still prepare nutritious meals while the government enforced a Luzon-wide lockdown more than two months ago.
It was Dino herself who came up with the idea of giving out free veggies from the “gulayan sa barangay” (vegetable farm in the village).
With the Mayon Volcano as a backdrop, residents have a wide variety of vegetable to choose from at the gulayan. These are: lettuce, eggplants, pechay, kangkong, tomatoes, ampalaya, string beans, chilli, okra, peanuts, sweet corn, and dragon fruit, among others.
Gilda G. Ranido, chief of Tesda Bicol, visited the farm when they were looking for a venue for their agricultural learning site for Bicolano farmers. The program would be accreditated by the Agriculture Technical Institute of Tesda.
Dino said “gulayan sa barangay” gained popularity among the public and government officials after a story about it was published on Rappler.
Aside from veggies, gulayan sa barangay also has ornamental plants. These include the Celosia plumosa with scientific name cocks comb or locally called palong manok, sunflowers, Celosias, Marigolds and differrent kinds of orchids such as palinopsis blooms.
The site is also suited for camping and ecotourism site in Albay where visitors can enjoy the rustic scenery within the organic vegetable basket.
Aside from Tesda, Dino said the staff of Albay 2nd District Representative Joey Salceda was also looking for a site for a future farm school here.
Barangay Salugan is known for abaca, coconut trees, pineapple, and other natural resources. It also proud of its, the pinangat, a Bicolano dish of cooked coconut meat and shrimp wrapped in taro leaves.
The gulayan sa barangay is adjacent to Farmers Bounty Village established by Albay Governor Al Francis Bichara. – Rappler.com