, Xing'an League, January 10th, title: Post-85 youth returning home to "jump the farm gate": from "not acclimatized to the soil and water" to chasing dreams in the countryside

  Author Zhang Wei Zeng Linggang Zhang Yu

  Bending over and standing up, with a sharp blade in your hand, cut off the true leaves and a cotyledon of a plate of pumpkin seedlings one by one; sit down, pick up a cucumber seedling, cut off the stem root obliquely, and seamlessly stick to the pumpkin seedlings Close it, then clamp it with the small red clip...

  The whole process of grafting seedlings takes only two or three seconds, and Zhang Peng, an agricultural technician, does it in one go.

  The new year is approaching, and Tuquan County, Xing'an League, located in the eastern part of Inner Mongolia, is covered with snow, reflecting the bright red lanterns that have just been hung on both sides of the road in Shuguang Modern Agricultural Circular Economy Park.

  The greenhouses in the park are full of greenery, and the agricultural technicians are busy raising seedlings and grafting seedlings, making a good start for this year's vegetable and fruit planting and gestating the hope of spring.

The picture shows agricultural technicians grafting seedlings.

Photo by Zeng Linggang

  "Pumpkin seeds should be placed flat, and the buds should be placed in the middle. After sprinkled with water, cover with plastic wrap. The thickness of the film is also particular. Too thin or too thick will affect the emergence rate..." Zhang Peng was busy with the work in his hand. Son, while constantly helping farmers answer questions.

  According to Zhang Peng, the sowing depth is controlled at about 1.5 centimeters, and the seeds can break through the ground in 6 days.

"In this way, after 13 days of grafting cucumbers, the order can be delivered on the sixth day of the first lunar month."

  This Spring Festival, Zhang Peng and the agricultural technicians will complete the order production of 180,000 vegetable and fruit seedlings.

"This batch of seedlings is mainly sold to the Xing'an League and some areas in Jilin Province. This year, a total of 3 batches can be raised, with about 3 million seedlings raised, and the gross income can reach 1.5 million yuan."

  12 years ago, the "post-85" Zhang Peng chose to return to his hometown to "jump into the farm". From "unaccustomed to the soil and water" to being handy, he has buried the seeds of his dreams in the soil and has taken root.

  Looking back on the seedling time along the way, Zhang Peng has a lot of emotion.

  In 2010, after graduating from Lanzhou University of Technology, Zhang Peng participated in an activity organized by Tuquan County to go to Shouguang, Shandong Province to learn seedling raising technology. After more than half a year, Zhang Peng returned to his hometown and started trying to raise seedlings.

  "However, the first batch of tomatoes encountered 'acclimatization'. Because of the differences in water, temperature, and soil, the tomatoes were not as big as a palm after they matured." Regarding the first seedling cultivation, Zhang Peng still remembers it vividly.

The picture shows Zhang Peng teaching seedling raising techniques to the villagers.

Photo by Zeng Linggang

  Zhang Peng said that many people advised him to give up.

"But I'd rather stick with it."

  So, Zhang Peng changed his strategy and went to consult the local "soil experts". Several pairs of shoes were broken, and he took notes pile after pile, constantly trying and summarizing.

Finally, he innovated and launched a new way of integrating seedling raising and grafting.

  In 2014, the cucumber seedlings bred by Zhang Peng had strong disease resistance, and the picking period could be extended by 2 months, and the planting income could be increased by 30%.

This year, Zhang Peng opened up the market. With a subsidy of 600,000 yuan from the government, he built 8 greenhouses, established his own agricultural company, and started large-scale and industrial seedling cultivation.

  Now, Zhang Peng's team is cultivating 3 million vegetable, melon, fruit, and flower seedlings a year for the market.

  In addition to the high survival rate of seedlings, good yield, and strong disease resistance, Zhang Peng also provides after-sales service, "It is mainly technical guidance, and the farmers should be carefully taught what seedlings are suitable for what water and fertilizer, and what temperature they like." Today's Zhang Peng Recognized as "Grass-roots Agricultural Technology Promoter" by the Agriculture and Animal Husbandry Department of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.

The picture shows the lush seedling shed.

Photo by Zeng Linggang

  "This year I ordered another 3,000 persimmon seedlings and 3,000 cucumber seedlings. The seedlings from his family have a high survival rate, and the fruit will sell well after they mature." He Fengjun, an "veteran" who has grown vegetables in greenhouses for more than 20 years, always comes to order seedlings. I want to discuss planting techniques with Zhang Peng.

  Under the leadership of Zhang Peng, more and more local villagers have participated in greenhouse planting, and the average annual income per mu has exceeded 50,000 yuan.

  After being busy with the Spring Festival, Zhang Peng plans to continue to go out for investigation and study. He has set a small goal for himself: to overcome the problem of tomatoes being durable but hard in taste as soon as possible, and to launch tomato seedlings with taste as soon as possible.

  In Zhang Peng's eyes, the tender green sprouts not only represent the joy of spring, but also give birth to new hope for farmers.

"In 2023, I hope we can breed better varieties and make the greenhouse a 'cornucopia' for growers to increase their income and get rich." (End)