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Fragrance of winter: Flower cultivation by Mali community in Odisha's Maliguda village

By Deepanwita Gita Niyogi 
In Maliguda, a village in Koraput district of Odisha dominated by the Mali community, flower cultivation is carried out in the winter season. Water for cultivation is available seasonally in the form of a stream which is used by the villagers for about six months. There are 25-30 households involved in the trade and earnings stand at Rs 300-500 per day on an average. Apart from flowers, residents of Maliguda cultivate small millets and paddy.
Flower 1: A woman farmer at work. Flower cultivation is possible due to water supply from a nearby stream but the supply reduces by February. 
Flower 2: It is important to keep the flowers in a safe place for the night. Flowers will be preserved carefully inside the room throughout the night and sold in the local market the next morning. Many women from the village sell flowers in donas or small leaf bowls. Many women in Maliguda cultivate flowers, along with vegetables and fresh greens like coriander. It is a side business to supplement the family income from November to February.
Flower 3: Apart from marigolds which are mostly grown, seasonal flowers are also a thing in the village.
Flower 4: A man tends to his flowers on a winter afternoon in Maliguda.
Flower 5: A woman plucks marigold flowers in Maliguda. Marigolds are in huge demand in the morning. Garlands made of marigold flowers are offered to deities.
Flower 6: A small girl carries marigold flowers to her house.

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