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Blooming Karnataka: Flower Fields Await Onam Season with Vibrant Floral Carpets

The flower farmers of Karnataka are busily preparing for the upcoming Onam market, nurturing their plants to ensure a steady supply of flowers to the state. The festivities start on Atham, August 20, and continue until Onam day, August 29. These vibrant flower fields, adorned with marigolds, chrysanthemums, and sunflowers, create a mesmerizing sight, delighting visitors who pose with flowers, take pictures, and immerse themselves in the colorful ambiance from morning to evening.

To reach the flower fields, one can cross the scenic Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary and the adjoining Bandipur Wildlife Sanctuary, arriving at Kakkalthondi. Farmers from various villages along National Highway 766, like Kakkathondi, Berambadi, Maddur, and others, eagerly await visitors not just from Kerala but also from Mysore, Bengaluru, and the neighboring Nilgiri district. This influx of visitors provides an additional source of income for the farmers between their regular harvests.

Despite facing a rain shortage in June, the floriculture farmers remain hopeful for a successful Onam season. While the paint companies remain their primary buyers, they find better earnings during Onam due to the regular demand for flowers, particularly marigolds and chrysanthemums, in Kerala. Sunflowers, on the other hand, cater to the oil industry.

Unfortunately, this year’s rain deficit has impacted the flower gardens, leading to a decrease in the number of flowers cultivated. Farmers like Krishnan express concern about the increased cost of flowers and the scarcity of other colors due to delayed sowing caused by water shortage.

As visitors drive along NH, they encounter long queues in front of flower fields, where farmers collect entry fees for photography. Rethnamma, a farmer woman, expects a higher number of visitors during the Onam season, although this year the flowers thrived only on irrigated lands due to limited showers.

The paint and sunflower oil companies play a crucial role in supporting the farmers with quality seeds, manure, and technical expertise in hi-tech cultivation. While marigolds cater to the paint industry, chrysanthemums find their way into the ornamental flower market, further contributing to the region’s vibrant floral tapestry.


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