Grapes to dragon fruit, the simple to the exotic; Bengaluru’s Lalbagh has it all

The five day festival is also displaying more than 50 rare fruits
Grapes to dragon fruit, the simple to the exotic; Bengaluru’s Lalbagh has it all
Grapes to dragon fruit, the simple to the exotic; Bengaluru’s Lalbagh has it all
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Come Wednesday, and Lalbagh had more than its usual share of bright colours and soothing sights – a wide variety of grapes, melons, and exotic fruits.

Dragon fruit with its green spike-like extensions, Passion Fruit, Malay Apple and a far more common sight to the Indian eye, grapes and watermelons – all these and more enticed visitors there at the “Grape and Watermelon Festival 2016” inaugurated in Lalbagh on Wednesday morning.

Other fruits at the five-day festival include apples purchased from Delhi and China; jackfruits from nearby Channapatna; Thailand mushrooms; red pear tomato; passion fruit; durians and Australian plums.
Organized by Horticultural Producers’ Cooperative Marketing and Processing Society Ltd. (HOPCOMS), the fair not only has a sale and display of fruits, but also other events such as jam-making, that draw visitors.

There are discounts for fruits sold at the festival, but for the next two months, people can avail discounts on different grape varieties like Sonaka, Thompson seedless, red Indian globe etc… at all 275 HOPCOMS outlets across the city.

MB Krishna, Managing Director of HOPCOMS said that the event is aimed at helping farmers by buying their produce for supporting prices. “Over the weekend, we are expecting a crowd of twenty to thirty thousand. We are also hoping to sell over 1,000 tonnes of grapes and melons,” he added.

“Comparatively the fest was organized better last year. The environment is not so customer-friendly this time. They did not even give me a bill for my purchase,” says Mrs. Sumangala, who has been visiting the mela every year. However, sixty one year old M.V.Kamat, a resident of Bomanahalli had a different say- “it’s organized in a disciplined way”.

The fest also saw experts from HOPCOMS conduct free training programmes for public on how to make various jams, jellies and squashes. “I came all the way from Cunnigham road to learn how to make jams, but they did not teach well expect for a small demo,” says a dejected senior citizen Mrs. Kirmani.

The event is being organized as part of the centenary celebrations of M.H. Marigowda, a pioneer of Horticulture in India. It was inaugurated by Horticulture Minister Shamanur Shivashankarappa and Transport Minister Ramalinga Reddy.

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