The second day we took the Aditi Mallya kids to Earth Trust in Ooty for a practical demo of Bio-dynamic farming and permaculture principles. Mr Mohan there initiated them with first a film on the horrifix hazards of chemical farming on land and people. Here we see Vania, the founder of the NGO, giving a very inspiring talk to the kids.
Archive for the ‘Agriculture’ Category
Acres Wild Farm was chosen by Forest Department to plant 5000 shola trees. This is part of a campaign to plant 5 lakh trees on the Chief Ministers birthday. Here you can see the local counselors helping us plant the trees. The forest department gave us the 2 year old saplings free of cost of course. Now the tough part is to ensure that they don’t become easy fodder for the bison and our cows 🙂
The kids from Aditi Mallya seen here, crumbling and spreading the compost on the raised vegetable bed. This was the real test and after the initial hesitation the kids realized that compost does not kill you. In fact it even smells great.
I don’t know whether this is to be expected but we are getting some giant-sized turnips and nodkol as you can see from this photo. Who ever said we need chemcals to grow food. It is the biggest myth that we need chemicals to feed the population of the world. It is exactly the opposite. Now off to enjoy some ‘mooli parathas’. 🙂
The veggies are rolling in once again after we have organised our vegetable area on the farm. We have planted beans, potatos, corn, raddish, beetroots and nodkol. Really encouraged with the way they are turning out on our new patch and all without chemicals and pesticides of course. Here are some fresh raddishes for our dinner.
Pablo works on Vegetable Patch
Zayn works on vegetable Patch
Rhea works on Vegetable Patch
We have been in touch with Priti and Srikanth who have been persevering at their farm, Vanashree, near Bangalore, to shape it as a true sustainable farm. Here I am posting an article ‘An eco-sustainable way of life’ from the Deccan Herald that shows just how much they have achieved. Tina and I are looking forward to visiting them soon to see it first hand and learn from their plain and honest efforts.
You can also check out all the other stuff from the Vanashree website.
Here is a excellent article by Vandana Shiva that reiterates the need of the day – return to non-oil based, non industrial farming that respects the basics of soil and diversity. Read it at Soil Not Oil – Why We Need to Kick Petroleum off Our Farms
Just one cow can raise crops on 30 acres. This news article from The Hindu about Shri Subhash Palekar of Maharashtra is worth reading as he calls his method ‘zero budget farming’. In the age of mindless and reckless chemical farming he stresses the importance of just a single cow to manage a field of upto 30 acres. Sounds a little too much for all of us who were unfortunately brought up on industrial concepts of productivity and agriculture.
Just a cow can raise crop on 30 acres
Staff Reporter – The Hindu, Coimbatore:
Just a cow can help you raise crop in 30 acres, without any external inputs, extra water or even electricity!
Zero budget farming That is the concept of zero budget farming, says Subash Palekar, Founder of the Zero Budget Farming Movement. He is in the city to address a workshop on zero budget farming that begins on Saturday. Only zero budget farming, which was being followed by nearly 24 lakh farmers in various states, can ensure increased food production, he told reporters here on Friday. “Chemical and organic farming methods are not helping us produce as much as we need. With just 12 crore hectare cultivable land available in the country, we cannot afford to lose more land to urbanisation. Government is only promoting organic farming for producing food items meant for export. It is only aiding in increasing the world economy and not the Indian economy,” Mr. Palekar said.
Farce Hitting out at officials who claimed that India was self-sufficient, he said that it was a farce. Quoting statistics of the last year he claimed that India was still in a position to import food. “Ten kg of cow dung is required for an acre a month. A ‘desi’ cow can give 11 kg of dung a day. Hence 30 acres can be cultivated. Almost any plant needs 98.5 per cent carbon dioxide to grow. Solar energy and water is needed to cultivate it. Only the remaining is needed from the soil. It is false when people say that manure is the basic food material for a crop,” he said. He quoted many success stories of farmers who had adopted the zero budget farming technique. Since 1988 he has been able to garner the support of farmers in Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Chattisgarh, West Bengal and Orissa. He has a considerable following in Tamil Nadu too. “We submitted a proposal of using the technique to the Tamil Nadu Government on Thursday. We hope they will accept it,” he said. Mr. Palekar said agricultural universities were propagating wrong practices like organic farming, vermin-composting and the like. “All these techniques are dangerous and against Nature.” “Farmers are not the only ones who are committing suicide. There are so many others committing suicide by consuming the food produce that comes out of wrong farming practices,” he added.