Posted by : Sainadh Reddy Saturday, 21 July 2012
When I was a young man, an elderly person in my village used to tell often, that your bank account will be written in red ink if you do not practice polyculture in your agriculture system. Every small inclusion on the farm plays an important role in improving the economic status of the farmer. On our 4 acre form we have a bore well. Though it has a capacity of yielding only 2000 gallons per hour, we are still able to save cropping, animal husbandry, agro forestry and bee keeping using minimum external inputs.
We had only 30 silver oak trees on the edges of our land among many other forest species which are still growing. We sold the 30 silver oak trees for Rs. 90,000 without incurring any expenses. With that experience, we have planted 300 of them on the edges, two years back. Fifteen years from now, they will fetch enough money to provide technical education for 2 of my grand children. We have 20 drum stick trees which fetch Rs. 5000 annually growing along the fence. We have 150 meters long and 6 meters wide trenches to drain excess water. There are many types of trees 100 teak, 6 Jake fruit, 2 bamboo, 10 Arjuna(Mathi), 120 coffee, 50 black pepper and many more. They give fruits, 500 kgs of fuel, 2 tonnes of green fodder and shed around 20 cubic meters of dry leaves, thirty year from now, we will be able to receive around twenty five lakh rupees apart from the trees acting as wind breaks, creating micro climate, hosting birds and other predators.
Among 16 years old sapota orchard, we grow ragi, foxrail, jowar, tur, papaya and also vegetables. Parallel to edge row of silver oak, we have 50 coconut trees among which we have 20 avacodo( Butter fruit) trees, 25 arecanut and black papper and(25 tons a year). We have a tahk which yields 8 kgs of azolla every day to supplement cocoentrare feeds for cattle worth rupees two hundred. Since we produce almost everything for our consumption, our expenses are minimizes. Thus, we are self reliant. ,ote than anything else, the health of the family members and our animals is very good. The secret of our sustainability is tecycling all the crop residues in building up humus content. This is very necessary to host soil organisms, preserve, moisture and provide oxygen for roots. Most impotently, preserving our own seeds, using biological pest control methods, producing enough manure to meet out own plant nutrient requirements, has been very helpful.
Lastly, involvement of our family members in agriculture and also our simple life style has led us to lead a honourable life. It is with a lot of concern to my farmer community that I have started a small training centre called “Parashara Jaivika Krishi Gurukula” to instill knowledge and practical experience in chemical free and external input free farming. We need such centers in every district of our country to save the soil, environment and provide food security with toxic free nutrition. At the end, I want to remind the administration, our agriculture scientists and mostly my farming community to grow more of micro-millets which are resistant to drought, pests and need less plant nutrients and inputs. Unless we promote and practice family farming and green farming, the future of all of us could end in misery and distress.
Shri Narayana Reddy is a legendary organic farmer and is one of the most sought after resource persons on ecological agriculture.
Srinivasapura, (near) Marelanahalli,
Hanabe Post-561 203, Doddaballapur Taluk,
Bangalore Rural District, Karanataka, India.
Source: LEIS INDIA