THE Department of Agriculture in Central Luzon, under the leadership of the Regulatory Division along with the Bureau of Plant Industry, awarded the first-ever Plant Nursery Certification this year to Mergel Plant Nursery from Bamban town in Tarlac province on Wednesday.

The Plant Nursery Accreditation from BPI is required to ensure the quality of planting materials or plants grown and sold by the owners of plant nurseries to clients. The accreditation also enables the nursery to sell to government branches.

The awarding was led by the Chief of the Regulatory Division Dr. Xandre Baccay and Senior Agriculturist from BPI National Seed Quality Control Services Jesus Stephanie Canderon.

According to nursery owner Angel Tulabut, who is a retired government employee and former Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) National Inspector, his establishment would help farmers have bigger income due to the quality planting materials that can be purchased from his nursery.

Tulabut's nursery is estimated at 2500 square meters. His crops include grafted mango, grafted avocado, grafted lime, grafted rambutan and assorted vegetable seedlings.

Due to Tulabut's extensive experience in technical plant management, he also conducts free short lectures for his clients.

"Before I release those who bought the plant from me, I first make sure that they have a briefing on its proper care. This is so that what they pay for will be used by them and they will earn," Tulabut said.

Meanwhile, there are only two BPI accredited plant nurseries in Central Luzon. These are the Kapampangan Development Foundation in Pampanga and the Mergel Plant Nursery in Tarlac province.