'Giant rice' explodes expected crop yields
The yield of rice is expected to surpass 15,000 kg per hectare as "giant rice" ripens in the experimental field in Hunan province, according to Changsha Evening News.
Xia Xinjie, chief researcher at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, was gratified as he stood in the experimental field in Changsha county, near the capital of Hunan, Changsha.
The 1.75-meter-tall researcher was glad to see the "giant rice" outgrew him by 40 centimeters. The grain giants and the aquatic products in their shade made for a perfectly harmonious ecosystem, he said.
"Compared with common rice, 'giant rice' enjoys a 15 to 20 percent yield increase," the researcher was quoted by Changsha Evening News as saying.
According to Xia, the "giant rice" — 1 centimeter in diameter — developed a strong capacity to resist disease. The shade created by the giants also provides a welcome habitat for aquatic products.
"Frogs feed upon the parasites on the rice. The excrements of fish, mud fish and frogs provide perfect fertilizer. The life cycle of the aquatic products coincide with the rice, so they can be managed together and reduce human labor," Xia said to Changsha Evening News.
Xia predicted that the rice output alone could bring in an economic gain of 300,000 yuan per hectare, and the frogs and mud fish could generate around 750,000 yuan per hectare.
The "giant rice" has been planted in Shaoyang, Changde, Zhuzhou and Changsha in Hunan.