SoCot pushes hydroponics farming in Lake Sebu

South Cotabato,Koronadal City- The provincial government of South Cotabato is pushing hydroponics farming in the critical areas of Lake Sebu to help improve the quality of its waters and overall condition.

Provincial Environment Management Office (PEMO) headed by Siegfred Flaviano, said that studies showed that hydroponics, which is a method of growing plants or crops without soil and by using mineral nutrients in aqueous solution (a solution in which water is the solvent), could be a “natural remedy” to the declining condition of the lake’s waters.

Flaviano specifically cited the deterioration these past years of the lake’s dissolved oxygen level, a situation that has triggered perennial fish kills, with the latest recorded only last January.

He said the natural wastes that have long accumulated at the lake maybe processed and used as fertilizers for the hydroponic gardens.

The provincial government, through PEMO, launched the hydroponics program in 2016 as part of the Lake Sebu Rehabilitation, Conservation and Development Program.

Flaviano said they trained at least 25 households in the area regarding the innovative system and helped establish vegetable gardens along the lake.

The program has so far thrived, with the household-beneficiaries now selling their “organic and chemical-free” vegetables such as lettuce to the area’s hotels and resorts.

The provincial government is currently working with the local government of Lake Sebu and other stakeholders for the establishment of more hydroponic gardens within the 354-hectare lake and at this time they are working on the purchase of at least two dissolved oxygen test kits to help stakeholders.