In her recent visit to plant nurseries of local government units (LGUs) in the First District of Cebu Province, Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia reminded her constituents to secure food for their family first before they engage in enterprising endeavors.
“Unaha usa ang inyong kaugalingon. Tingali unya’g inig pupo ninyo diretso og panghatag ug pamaligya. Siguroha usa ang matag pamilya, ang inyong mga minahal sa kinabuhi,” Garcia told Carcaranons.
The main purpose of the Sugbusog program when it was first launched in 2020 during the height of the coronavirus pandemic was for every household to have a steady supply of food.
Governor Garcia started making rounds all over the Province to inspect the municipal and city Sugbusog nurseries to see how the LGUs spent the P1 million that the Capitol downloaded to them to implement the program.
On Monday, April 12, the governor first went to Barangay Can-asujan where the Carcar City Plant Nursery is located.
Carcar City Agriculturist Rey Trangia said the 1.5-hectare nursery has existed since 2015. It is on a four-hectare property by way of a 10-year deed of usufruct. That is why planting materials like banana suckers and vegetable seedlings were already available for around two thousand households, he said.
Their aquaponic system was created for demonstration purposes. It utilizes the flood and drain method that seems to be more effective, unlike other aquaponics setup.
“Unlike adtong setup nga circulating water, ang atong aquaponics system is gi-design gyud nato nga mo-flood and drain. Gikan sa fish tank ang iyang tubig moadto sa gravel bed, unya naay bell siphon didto nga mag-flood and drain before siya moadto sa floating raft nga naa gitanom ang mga lettuce,” he said. “Gitagaan og time makaginhawa ang gamut sa tanom. Mao ni ang atong gihimo nga media para mo-thrive ang bacteria, mo-convert sa ammonia – kadtong waste sa isda – to a form of nitrate, kadto bitawng sa atong biology lesson about nitrogen-fixing bacteria,” Trangia explained.
Carcar City is one of the LGUs that have religiously implemented the program and has even distributed seedlings to some households.
From ‘Bonga’ to ‘Bongga’ in Sibonga
Garcia lauded Sibonga for its flourishing municipal nursery, pointing out that the town has truly lived up to the etymology of its name which is “bonga” or fruit and even punctuated fruitfulness with style and impression.
“Gikan sa bonga, nahimong bongga,” the governor said.
“Tinud-anay gyud ni nganhi nga gitrabaho kay namunga na gud ang talong ug kamatis. Tinud-anay nga mikuyog sa atong Sugbusog program. Congratulations, Sibonga! Unta mamahimo mong sumbanan sa ubang LGU. Kay naay LGU nga wala pa ka-procure. Lisud ba gud mag-procure og liso? Makapamalit man gani ang mga kapitan sa barangay, unsa na kaha ang LGU?” she added.
Garcia also met garden growers in Barangay Greenhills, San Fernando behind the “Gulay ay Wasto at Epektibong Nutrisyon (GWEN) Greenhills – an Active and Responsible Community Implementing Agriculture (GARCIA).
The governor was all praises for the garden growers’ innovation, who also went into organic quail eggs production and the raising of turkeys, even though these are not part of the mechanics of the Sugbusog contest.
Garcia proceeded to Barangay Vito in Minglanilla where she also inspected expansion works of the municipal nursery sourced from Sugbusog funds downloaded to the LGU.
In the cities of Naga and Talisay
Garcia’s last stops were the city nurseries of Naga and Talisay.
Naga City Mayor Kristine Chiong accompanied the governor to Barangay Tinaan and Barangay Inayagan where two households joined the vertical gardening and containerized garden category.
The governor was also impressed with Talisay City’s nursery.
The city agriculturists took pride in their urban aquaculture setup utilizing a small space at the vicinity of the city hall that used to be a parking area, where tilapia is now raised. The location also has a coop that houses native chickens and teepee beds for germination of various seeds.
Garcia also carried out in each LGU a ceremonial turnover of an Australian variety of thorn-less lime (kalamansi).
In each stop, she received baskets of freshly harvested eggs, garden produce such as wild bitter gourd (ampalaya), cacao and squash, among others as tokens. In Minglanilla, she was gifted with boxes of mushroom brownies produced locally. In Talisay, Garcia received dishes prepared by fisherfolk from their catch such as “kinilaw” and crabs.
The governor said she will continue to go around other districts to see how the LGUs spent government funds.
The Province had downloaded P1 million to each LGU for the implementation of the Subusog program. Half of the amount was to be used to set up nurseries, while the other half was to prepare for the contest in the municipal level. (Eleanor Valeros)