29 Jun 2011

Ivisan farmers learn basics in organic farming, vegetable production

By Niño Manaog
University Extension Associate
Capiz State University

On June 28, 2011, Training Coordinator Eduardo Navarra of the Capiz State University (CapSU) Extension Institute led a training lecture on organic farming and vegetable production to some 20 farmers representing barangays Ondoy, Matnog, Sta. Cruz, Ilaya and Basiao, all of Ivisan town in Capiz.

Held at the Ivisan Farmers Information and Technology Services (FITS) Center in Poblacion, Ivisan, Capiz, the livelihood training formed part of the two day Vegetable Production and Post-Harvest Handling Training led by the Office of the Municipal Agriculturist (OMA) of Ivisan under the leadership of Municipal Agriculturist Letecia Andrada and Agricultural Technologist Giovannie Lawag.

Among others, Eduardo Navarra briefed the participants on the disadvantages of commercial modern farming and stressed on the advantages of organic farming, stressing on how to best equip and protect the soil for quality production.  

According to Navarra, commercial modern farming using too much chemicals and pesticides not only depletes the soil quality but also harms human beings. In turn, he stressed on the benefits that farmers would get from practicing organic farming technologies.

Navarra, CapSU Techno Gabay team leader, highlighted the projects of Ramon Peñalosa, Magsasaka Siyentista (MS) of fits opa Negros Occidental who practices integrated natural farming and produces his own insecticides, pesticides and similar other technologies in his farms in Victorias City and Manapla, Negros Occidental.

Navarra also suggested that farmers should make their own foliar fertilizers like Dao FITS Center in Dao, Capiz whose focus commodity (indigenous microorganism concoctions) very well complements and assists organic farming.

Navarra also urged the participants to form a group of farmers in their little communities who would focus on producing organic vegetables and crops because there will always be demand for them. He likewise assured that the local government of Ivisan led by Mayor Felipe Neri Yap will always welcome such initiatives if only to serve the members of the locality.

The lecture orientation, along with some demonstration of some farming materials and technologies, drew favorable response from a number of farmers.

Sixty-year-old Danilo Obrigue who maintains some 1.5 hectares of palay and 4,000 sq.m. planted to vegetables said he plans to try organic farming because it proves economical and friendly to people’s health. The former barangay captain of Ondoy said that vegetable growers in their locality were inspired by the type of farms they saw in Palayamanan in barangay Mianay that they would want to replicate it in their own barangay.  For Obrigue, this is now the time to inspire others to pursue organic farming.

Seventy-one year old Mercedes Aldea, who has been farming in Sitio Balangasan in Ondoy since 1964, saw the ease in practicing organic farming. It is pasil (easy) because it makes use of materials that can be found in our very surroundings. She herself uses rice straws and chicken manure for compost and fertilizer and plans to maintain the same in her one-half hectare land planted to palay and banana. Aldea also produces patola and vegetables which she periodically sells in Ivisan market.

Meanwhile, 54-yr-old Avelina Benosa who has a 9,000 sq.m.- rented piece of land planted to coconut, banana and native ginger also wants to produce vegetables. For this purpose she considers sustaining their farm using both commercial and organic farming. For Benosa, she would adapt any practice that would best add to her productivity. 

The two-day initiative also covered lectures and demonstrations on seed selection and site selection, integrated nutrient management, integrated pest management, post-harvest handling practices and marketing. 

CapSU Dayao trains Adventists on bangus deboning, sardines making

By Niño S. Manaog
University Extension Associate
Capiz State University

On February 27, 2011, members of the Seventh-Day Adventists (SDA) from Roxas City were trained on fish processing by the faculty of department of fishery based in Capiz State University Dayao Campus in Dayao, Roxas City.

Prof. Jocelyn Legaspi of the fishery department taught some 25 participants composed of SDA professionals and housewives on bangus (milkfish) deboning. Each of the students brought one kilo of fresh milkfish which they used for the teaching demonstration and hands-on. Then, Prof. Raquel Arguelles of the same department proceeded to teach them on the how to make sardines.

According to Prof. Ofelia Fabela, the SDAs very much appreciated the livelihood training extended to them and wanted “to have more” of the trainings by CapSU Dayao.

Fabela, who is SDA herself, said they would be happy to learn other livelihood skills which they can use in the household or even in business.

According to Prof. Fatima Sustento, fishery department head of CapSU Dayao, they feel fulfilled “to cater to any demand to which we can be of help.” Sustento said their department is “also happy to impart our livelihood skills to other people.”

Sustento added that they would feel greater fulfillment if they are given the chance to reach out to other groups and communities who can benefit from the skills they teach.

27 Jun 2011

CapSU Dayao leads mangrove reforestation drive

By Joselito Sitjar
Extension Chairperson
CapSU Dayao

In support of its ongoing Mangrove Reforestation Project launched in September last year, the Capiz State University (CapSU) Dayao Campus through its Fishery department led the mangrove trees planting in barangay Talon, Roxas City recently.

The CapSU Dayao team led by Prof. Domingo Allanic, Prof. Joselito Sitjar, Prof. Pascasio Reyes and Prof. Eddie Tupaz spearheaded the planting of mangrove trees along the shoreline of the said barangay. Some 20 Talon barangay officials and barangay folk and the Fishery students representing all levels of CapSU Dayao took part in the initiative.

According to Mr. Domingo Allanic, mangrove reforestation coordinator of CapSU Dayao, the initiative has been launched to create awareness and promote environmental protection among the people of barangay Talon, its neighboring community. The mangrove seedlings used for the reforestation drive were propagated at the mangrove nursery of CapSU Dayao. Allanic said that all these steps contribute to help create or restore the fish’s natural habitat in the area, which could later help establish it as an eco-tourism site.

For her part, Dr. Lucy Beluso, CapSU Dayao campus administrator, said that this and other similar initiatives virtually form part of the campus’s flagship advocacy to reach out to the fishing communities and help improve the livelihood of its constituents. 

A participant takes the first step in reforesting
the mangrove area in barangay Talon.

22 Jun 2011

Brown Plant Hoppers (BPH) Outbreak: Threats and Practical Solutions

By Benjamin A. Gutierrez
Municipal Agriculturist
Cuartero, Capiz 

A potent threat to the performance of rice crops is the presence of yield-reducing insect pests like the brown plant hoppers (BPH), Nilaparvata lugens (Stal) (Hemiptera: Delphacidae). These insects do not only cause the wilting and drying of rice plants (as hopper burns); they also transmit the grassy stunt and ragged stunt virus diseases.

Latest field observations in Capiz showed that a significant portion of rice areas suffered from hopper burns in patches and in irregular patterns of infestation. LGU reports on the BPH damage in September 2010 revealed that the area damage ranged from 10 to 50%, while the degree of hopper burns in each of the rice farms affected ranges from 10% to 100%. Said figures on BPH in the area only validate the recorded population of 4 to 12 hoppers per tiller and 20 to 180 BPH adults per 10 sweeps, which is higher than the usual 1 BPH adult per tiller.

Besides adopting asynchronous rice plantings in their affected areas, rice farmers can spray chemicals to counter these insect pests. Previous and current programs of the national government on pest control and management encourage such practices.

Left photo shows a rice farm in Capiz infested by BPH in 2010.
The lower green portion was later infested by the disease in concentric pattern.
Right photo shows rice field in the adjoining area not infested by the BPH.

How to Control and Manage Brown Plant Hoppers

What follows are practical solutions you can do to counter threats posed by BPH or waya-waya.

Plant rice varieties which are resistant to BPH—like PSB Rc 10 (Pagsanjan), PSB Rc 32 (Jaro) and PSB Rc 34 (Burdagol). This is the most practical and effective means to control rice disease. But not all modern or high-yielding varieties possess resistance to all pests. Pests to which the said varieties are susceptible may also grow unchecked.

Follow contiguous or clustering with similar planting schedule. This scheme will break the pest’s life cycle that will eventually minimize insect pest population buildup to damaging level.

Regulate the planting density based on the recommended seeding rate or plant population per unit area.This will help reduce the BPH populations by providing a lesser favorable environment during infestation.

Apply the right kind and amount of nitrogen fertilizer. Excessive chemical N fertilizer applications will enhance the development of many insect pest species while the application of inadequate amount of N and other nutrients needed by the rice plants will make them more susceptible to damage.

Do not destroy the bunds along the rice and non-rice areas. These areas serve as sources of foods (pollen and nectars from the flowers of plants) mostly for the beneficial organisms. When insecticide is applied in the rice area, the bunds also serve as the hiding places for beneficial organisms where they could populate.

Do not spray chemicals within 40 days after seeding or 30 days after transplanting. When spraying is done within this period, a big number of beneficial organisms will die, so pests multiply exponentially because said organisms are absent. Hence, insect pest outbreak occurs.

By reducing or properly choosing insecticides, allow for the preservation and augmentation of the population of beneficial organisms. These organisms include the egg masses and adults of mirid bugs, dragonflies and damselflies, spiders and other hymenopteran insects.

Reduce the frequency of chemical application to slow down the development of insect resistance to insecticides. BPH endemic in the Philippines are slow-developing resistant pests, but in China, Thailand and Indonesia they develop 1,000 times because of insecticides resistance caused by the heavy use of chemicals.

When the rice plants are sprayed with insecticides, BPH have higher fecundity or ability to multiply.

If the BPH population is in epidemic or damaging level and the rice plants are in the vulnerable (tillering) stage, spray selective insecticides and integrate with water management. This will minimize infestation and damage.

Visit and monitor twice a week your own rice fields and those of others nearest your area. Because BPH are present year-round and their migration from other areas is highly possible, regular field observation may also help identify the potential pest problems for preventive and corrective management.


Catindig J., S. Villareal, and R. Saltin. 2010. “Planthopper Outbreaks in Iloilo, Philippines.” A report posted by the International Rice Research Institute, Los Baños, Philippines and Department of Agriculture Regional Office, Iloilo City.

Gutierrez, BA and GL Gregorio. 2001. “Population dynamics of insect pest and their predators among lowland rice varieties applied with varying rates of nitrogen fertilizer.” PSPC Research Journal 8:1: 1–18.

Heong, K. L. “Tips in controlling and managing rice planthoppers.” Ecological Entomologist. Los Baños: International Rice Research Institute.

Ministry of Agriculture and Food. 1986. Integrated Pest Management: Rice. Philippine-German Crop Protection Programme: Pocket Reference Manual. Malate, Manila: Bureau of Plant Industry.

Philippine Rice Research Institute. 2004. Integrated Pest Management Question and Answer Series No. 3. Muñoz, Nueva Ecija.

Way, MJ and KL Heong. 1994. “The role of biodiversity in the dynamics and management of insect pests of tropical rice a review.” Bulletin of Entomological Research No. 84. 567–587.

Webster, Robert K. and Pamela S. Gunnell. 1992. Compendium of Rice Diseases. St. Paul, Minnesota: The American Phytopathological Society.

It’s green and go

CHED okays CapSU’s upland rice, sorghum projects

By Niño S. Manaog
University Extension Associate
Capiz State University

Research activities at the Capiz State University will be prolific this year.

In December 2010, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) approved the P2.6M worth of R&D projects which were started implementation in the last quarter of 2010.

The two programs—mainly on the development of indigenous upland rice and seed technology for sweet sorghum in the province of Capiz—contain five major projects with an average of three studies each.

The first project titled “Socio Economic Profile, Behavioral Perspectives and Farming Practices among Upland Rice Farmers in the Province of Capiz” to be conducted by dr. Evelyn Gregorio will assess the knowledge, perceptions and attitudes of upland rice farmers towards adopting measures to cope with climate change. Besides producing the farmers’ socioeconomic profile, indigenous cultural management practices and farming systems. Gregorio’s research will also identify the economics of production and marketing modes being practices by the said group.

The second project titled “Varietal Collection and Characterization of Indigenous Upland Rice in the Highlands of the Province of Capiz” to be conducted by Dr. Geronimo Gregorio has three objectives. The research will assess the ecological attributes of upland rice farms in the province under study; it will undertake the varietal collection and characterization of existing upland rice varieties; and it will also evaluate the quality of grains of the rice varieties under study.

Upland farmers in Agcococ, Tapaz, Capiz take stock
of the kalutak rice variety in October 2010. They prefer the variety
for its robust yield and resistance to drought.

Dr. Federito Launio’s “Technology Development and Evaluation to Optimize the Production Potentials of Indigenous Upland Rice in the Province of Capiz” will seek to evaluate the growth and yield of upland rice varieties. Launio’s study will also assess the varieties’ response to the levels of agricultural inputs and their reactions to common pests and diseases.

Meanwhile, Dr. Ramona Launio’s “Post-Harvest Management for Indigenous Upland Rice in the Province of Capiz” will not only document the post-harvest handling procedures practiced by upland rice farmers but also conduct assessment of their entrepreneurial potentials and activities on product development.

Finally, the “Seed Technology and Farming Systems Development for Sweet Sorghum in the province of Capiz will conduct seed maturation studies in relation to seed quality and storability. It will also study the production performance of sweet sorghum varieties after rainfed lowland rice applied with bio-organic inoculants and fertilizers. The last study on sweet sorghum will undertake the production of sweet sorghum varieties under grownup coconuts in various population densities applied with biofertilizer and soil enhancer. 

Dr. Geronimo Gregorio, Vice-President for Research, Development and Extension of CapSU, expressed optimism on the forthcoming researches. According to Gregorio, said studies will help boost the momentum of the university’s research efforts. “There is indeed so much to do, given the bulk of studies on these two crops. “We can, however, try to accomplish the tasks piece by piece, bit by bit,” Gregorio said.

For Gregorio, the year 2010 has been productive for CapSU’s research and extension. The university has been very active in the said areas, churning out significant researches and relevant studies that even gained recognition from R&D associations and consortiums across the region and country.

With these projects lined up for 2011, the best in research is yet to come.

COE leads CapSU Burias’s extension activities

By Elnor Briones and Genalyn Baranda
Faculty, College of Education
CapSU Burias

In the evaluation led by the Accrediting Agency of Chartered Colleges and Universities in the Philippines (AACCUP) in November 2010, the College of Education (COE) of CapSU Burias was granted Level III accreditation for its Teacher Education Program. According to COE Dean Grizelda Lava, the Extension Program helped enhance the performance of the College.

COE's faculty brainstorm for plans and targets for the
coming year. Faculty includes (from left) Prof. Leonora Gimoto,
Prof. Trinidad Abao, Prof. Elnor Briones
and Prof. Noeme Bargo.
According to Extension Coordinator Elnor Briones, CapSU Burias is tasked to assist the marginalized members of the community in terms of literacy, livelihood skills, and values reorientation.

For Prof, Briones, part of their mission is to train clientele on alternative learning systems and extend non-formal education sessions at all levels for the improvement of pupils and students in their community.

Under the leadership of Briones and guidance of Dr. Grizelda Lava, the COE adopted schools for extension services. The Mambusao National High School situated in Tumalalud, Mambusao, Capiz became recipient of the Adopt-a-School Program where faculty of the College of Education allotted their time, expertise and resources to enhance the quality of instruction.

In particular, Prof. Angelyn Vestidas and Mr. Rodyard Madiclum facilitated the cultural coaching of the students in MNHS while the rest of the faculty composed of Prof. Davidica Avelino, Mr. Gerard Lee Atienza, Dr. Leonora Gimoto, Prof. Evelyn Layes, Prof. Trinidad Abao, Prof. Elisa Lipardo, Prof. Genalyn L. Baranda, Miss Jennylyn Laña, Dr. Merlita Navarra and Prof. Lady May Celo taught them learning skills and values across the different subjects.

The College of Education also adopted Burias Elementary School for a feeding program, an initiative led by Prof. Noeme Bargo, Prof. Elnor Briones, Prof. Edna Navarra and Prof. Rhodora Laguda. The COE faculty also extended livelihood training for mothers and literacy classes to pupils in the surrounding barangays.

Throughout the year, the College led technology and information dissemination drives and to share the spirit of Christmas in December, the College hosted Alay sa Kapwa gift giving program for the indigent families in barangay Burias, Mambusao, Capiz.

CapSU Burias’s COE beefs up faculty, research

By Trinidad Abao and Genalyn Baranda
Faculty, College of Education
CapSU Burias

During the evaluation led by the Accrediting Agency of Chartered Colleges and Universities in the Philippines (AACCUP) in November 2010, the Bachelor of Secondary Education and the Bachelor of Elementary Education of CapSU Burias College of Education (COE) were granted Level III accreditation. Among other things, AACCUP’s evaluating team advised CapSU Burias to give priority to its research and extension units.

According to Dean Grizelda Lava, part of the achievement in the accreditation is the upgraded profile of human resources in the college. In pursuit of CapSU’s vision of upgrading the quality of education, COE’s faculty members have been highly encouraged to pursue graduate studies in the CapSU system and outside academic institutions.  

Mr. Rodyard B. Madiclum, physical education major completed his degree Master of Arts in Teaching, major in Physical Education at the Filamer Christian University, Roxas City.

In 2010, through the International Fellowship Program of the Ford Foundation, Prof. Genalyn L. Baranda completed her graduate degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from the SIT Graduate Institute in Vermont. To date, Prof. Baranda has also completed her graduate degree in English from the CapSU Poblacion Campus.

Prof. Lady May Celo, the campus guidance counselor, obtained Master in Management from CapSU Graduate School in Mambusao, and also completed the academic requirements for Master of Science in Guidance and Psychology at the West Visayas State University in Iloilo City.

Prof. Angeline Vestidas was granted her master’s degree in Physical Education while Prof. Davidica L. Avelino earned her Master of Arts in Teaching Mathematics, both from the Filamer Christian University.

Among others, faculty from the College also attended seminar workshops on technical writing and proposal making, joined in-house reviews, and participated in symposia and other activities designed to enhance the writing skills and research capability of students and faculty.

Through the years, the College has also been prolific and proactive in producing researches which won recognition for faculty and student researchers. For one, the study titled “Farmers’ Impressions and Expectations of the RDE Activities of CapSU” by Dr. Geronimo L. Gregorio and Dr. Evelyn Gregorio was awarded Best Paper in the local symposium, Best Paper in the university symposium, and second runner-up in the regional research symposium.

Meanwhile, the “English Proficiency of Student Entrants at the College of Education in CapSU Burias Campus from 2005 to 2008” authored by Mr. Gerard Lee Atienza, Prof. Genalyn L. Baranda, Clea Marie Geca, and Mariel Lozada was cited Best Paper in the Local Level, Best Paper in the University Level, and 4th Runner-Up in the Regional Level.

The “Status of Mathematics Instruction as Perceived by College Students at CapSU Burias” by Dr. Evelyn L. Gregorio and Ronel Vaje was named Best Paper in the local level and cited first runner-up in the university level.

Another study titled “Student Teachers’ Readiness to Teach Mathematics at CapSU: An Assessment” authored by Dr. Evelyn L. Gregorio, Prof. Milagros Potato, and Joan Barion was also cited best paper in the local and university levels.

The COE is mandated not only to produce quality teachers who could be globally competitive but also increase the involvement of the faculty members and students in research activities through appropriate and acceptable rewards and incentives.

11 Jun 2011

Capiz sugarcane farmers tour Antique muscovado sugar mills

By Niño S. Manaog
University Extension Associate II
Capiz State University

An association of sugar cane planters from President Roxas, Capiz led by Pambansang Kilusan ng mga Samahang Magsasaka (Pakisama) Western Visayas headed by Coordinator Marissa Tuazon went on an exposure trip to muscovado processing mills in the province of Antique recently.

Through Pakisama's coordination with the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Capiz, some 15 farmer members of the Sto Niño Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Multi-purpose Cooperative (SNARBMPC) led by Chairperson Leonisa de la Cruz and Manager Ronaldo Capapas of barangay Sto Niño, President Roxas, Capiz visited a number of muscovado sugar processing sites in the towns San Jose de Buenavista, Bugasong and Laua-an, all of Antique.

The team first visited the Antique Federation of Cooperatives (AFCCUI) showroom in San Jose de Buenavista, Antique, where Marketing Officer Richard Montero briefed them on the muscovado products manufactured and marketed by AFCCUI. The team then visited El Maestro Muscovado Packaging, AFCCUI’s packaging center situated in San Jose de Buenavista, Antique.

An El Maestro Muscovado Packaging Center personnel briefs the Capiz sugarcane farmers led by Pakisama Visayas Coordinator Marissa Tuazon (second from left) and trained Farmer Technician Denia Pastrana (third from left) on the packaging details of their products.
Accompanied by Ms. Fely Labrador of AFFCUI, the group proceeded to a privately owned sugar mill in Bugasong where the DAR and DA personnel shared information with the mill owner and operators. Here, the farmers observed the last steps involved in sugar milling.

After dropping by San Jose de Buenavista for lunch, the study team proceeded to the processing site and business office of Laua-an Multipurpose Cooperative in Laua-an, Antique. In the last stop at Laua-an, the farmers and coordinators were briefed by Mr. Ernesto Española, Jr., the cooperative’s manager, who shared substantial information on the mills equipment and his management practices.

Under the Farmers for Food Project of Pakisama, the study tour allowed participants to see sugarcane milling technologies from the host cooperatives and organizations. More important, the exposure trip drew valuable responses from them. While some of the farmers said it was their first time to go to Antique and see muscovado mills and processing, others expressed satisfaction and enjoyment despite the long-hour trip. The delegation virtually toured the three provinces of Panay Island in one day, starting from President Roxas, Capiz going to Iloilo and Antique to Aklan and back to Capiz.

Participants observed that the mill in Bugasong, Antique used basic facilities and less-managed practices. This privately owned mill processes muscovado sugar the conventional way. For instance, it still uses gantang as a mode of sharing or portioning. The processing also takes place in a makeshift bodega or barn-like structure made of wooden and bamboo materials. Nevertheless, their exposure to this mill gave them a firsthand experience with the presence of small-scale sugar mills.

The Laua-an Multipurpose Cooperative (left) produces muscovado sugar available in three quality grades.
Meanwhile, Mr. Bepir Delfin, infrastructure coordinator of DAR Capiz, noted that despite the long trip to the sites, the entire effort was productive because he managed to secure the model and specifications for the building, the physical layout including the specifications for the chimney and ventilation and the baking ovens.  De la Cruz observed that the Bugasong sugar mill uses 3 kilns or processing ovens for muscovado while the Laua-an Multipurpose Cooperative has five processing dishes and a giant salaan.

Other participants said the prices of their product are affordable, while others were amazed by how the mills they visited process the muscovado sugar. Some even said that they were excited to handle and operate the machines in the processing mills and others expressed gratitude for the safe travel of the entire delegation.

Mr. Ernesto Espanola, Jr., manager of Laua-an Multipurpose Cooperative (left) shares to trained Farmer Technician and SNARBMPC board of directors member Elnie Gequila (second from right) and fellow sugar cane farmers vital information on his muscovado sugar processing operations. Established in 1991, Laua-an MPC has been granted financial assistance by a host of NGOs including Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP). The cooperative has been processing muscovado sugar since 2008.
Magdalena Saspa, member of the cooperative’s board of directors, had to say that the exposure trip inspired her on how to enhance the management capabilities of the cooperative in handling projects.

According to Pakisama Coordinator Marissa Tuazon, the Laua-an Multipurpose Cooperative is well-organized and observes good management. For Tuazon, one could see the unity among its officers and members, “which serves them well.” Tuazon observed that the Lauaan Multipurpose Cooperative, the second site visited by the group, also has a model processing mill. Moreover, its resource personnel and those in charge of the machines and mills explained well the functions of the equipment used, even as they were also willing to share the information to the participants.

Elnie Gequilan, trained farmer technician and board of director of SNRBMMPC (left) consults the owners of the muscovado sugar mill in Bugasong. Among others, the study team sought details on facilities they can replicate for SNARBMPC including the specifications of the sugar mill equipment produced for them by a Bacolod-based fabricator.

While the Bugasong sugar mill is privately owned, the equipment and facilities in Lauaan Multipurpose Cooperative are financed by a host of national and international organizations including Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP) and Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).

The colaboration between the Capiz State University and Pakisama Visayas was made possible through the coordinaton efforts of Mr. Eduardo Navarra, CapSU's university extension specialist.

Capiz sugarcane farmers led by Leonisa de la Cruz (standing first from left) and Manager Ronaldo Capapas (standing, third from right) assisted by Pakisama Visayas Coordinator Marissa Tuazon (front row, fourth from left) establish contacts with AFFCUI represented by Marketing Officer Richard Montero (front row, extreme right). Among others, the partnership will allow for collaborations on muscovado sugar processing.