Indian Couple Create Magic, Cultivate Rice Paddies in the Desert

Indian Couple Create Magic, Cultivate Rice Paddies in the Desert

This Indian couple from Kerala has successfully grown rice in their 1.5 hectare farm in Sharjah

An Indian couple has created magic in the arid Gulf region by cultivating rice paddies on a piece of land in Sharjah.

Agro-entrepreneur Sudheesh Guruvayoor, and his wife, Ragisudhish have domesticated harsh and non-favourable conditions where farming has never been easy. Under such circumstances, cultivating a water-dependent crop, sustainably, is no less than a magic.

In an interview to The National News, Sudheesh said, "I am a one-man army who managed to create my Garden-of-Eden, planting and harvesting seeds for future generations. I used spare time to plant vegetables and have succeeded in cultivating paddy and wheat in Sharjah.”

Ragisudhish, a microbiologist has supports her husband at the vegetable gateway of their firm - 'Green Heaven Farm and Camping', located in Sharjah.

Their rural idyll of water-soaked fields, also features a thatched hut, a pond ringed with sunflowers and bright red chillies growing by the dozen. The couple is blessed with two children.

According to the article on The National News, their 1.5 hectare farm is located in the Al Zubair district of Sharjah.

The plot includes a mini-waterfall, a pond with a boat where visitors can sit, an organic vegetable garden and a traditional hut made from coconut palm fronds that visitors can pay to stay in.

Sudheesh's was inspired about the project when travel restrictions due to COVID-19 were in force.

With families finding it harder to travel back to India, he decided to recreate a familiar countryside scene in the UAE. But since opening this year, the farm has attracted people from a wide range of nationalities.

Other features include a large water wheel, a well and a viewing platform with views out over the farm.

The Green Heaven Farm additionally has banana plants, coconut trees, a barbecue area, a tea shop and a vegetable shop.

Rice, chillies, other vegetables, including cabbages, are grown at the farm using organic methods. The farm also accommodates animals such as rabbits, ostriches, pigeons, lovebirds and emus.

To give a feel of his native, Kerala, there are road signs highlighting towns in the state, including Thrissur and Guruvayoor.

The farm is open to the public from 8.30 am to 6.30 pm, seven days a week, with Saturdays and Sundays being the busiest. Entry costs around $5.45 for adults, and is free for young children and pensioners.

Sudheesh, a former electrical engineer, has lived in the UAE since 1997 while his wife runs a microbiology laboratory at Sharjah Corniche Hospital.

The couple have a son, Shreyas, 19, and a daughter, Shradha, 16. “We believe that the fast life of the city should be complemented with the placidity of a village and this is what Green Heaven Farms tries to provide its visitors,” he added.

Apart from looking after his own venture, Sudheesh manages an organic farm in Dubai and a team of staff run the site in Sharjah.

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