Cultivation of kans grass (called kash phool in Bangla) serves as a modest earning source for many people, especially those in different char (sandy riverbank) areas of the district.
After recession of the floodwater every year, kash seeds naturally germinate in the vast tracts of char areas in different upazilas of the district.
In October every year, its white flower-stalks keep waving even in a gentle breeze and create a charming atmosphere along the river banks as well as the char lands.
Usually, month of January and February are the trading months of kans grass straws.
After harvesting the kans grass in the month of November, farmers pile up the kans grass along the river banks or in the open char lands for drying up.
Later, they prepare bundles of the dried up kans straws. Usually, length of a healthy straw is around eight to ten feet.
Farmer Abdul Mannan, 40, of Porarchar village under Jatrapur union in Kurigram Sadar upazila, said, “The area of kans cultivation is not fixed as it depends on flood."
Rustam Ali, 54, of Char Shitayejhar village under Mogalbasha union in the upazila, said after harvesting kans in the month of November many farmers go for cultivation of Boro or other Robi crops.
They sell each small bundle of kans straw for Tk 3 to Tk 5 to the buyers, who come from across the country.
During a visit to Mogalbasha union this correspondent saw some labourers busy preparing kans straw bundles.
“Preparing kans straw bundles is a seasonal work and I have been involved with it for nearly eight years now,” said day labourer Noor Mohammad, 55.
Usually, we prepare a large bundle of dried kash straw with 10 small bundles, consisting 10 straws, he said, adding that they get Tk 400 for 100 large bundles.
Kans trader Nayebar Ali, 58, said, the business lasts for four months from November.
After preparing the straw bundles farmers keep those on the river banks and traders go there by boats to purchase the item, he said, adding that they buy one thousand of small bundles for Tk 3,000 to Tk 5,000.
They take the kans bundles to other districts like Rajshahi, Khulna and Barisal and sell each thousand of small bundles for Tk 6,000 to Tk 7,000 to the local traders.
In the peak season, at least seven to eight trucks of kans straws are sold at Mogalbasha Haat every week,” Nayebar said.
Sadar Upazila Agriculture Officer Shashthy Chandra Roy said for the char farmers kans grass is a natural crop, which is grown without any investment or labour.