Man Made Forest In India -Kasargod -” Abdul Kareem Forest “


Man Made Forest In India -Kasargod

SOURCE : GOODNEWSINDIA.COM

Kareem was a man who was neither lettered nor connected to any source of information that would help him. He trusted his guts. He was a man haunted by his desire for a Kaavu. After about a year of helplessly watching his property, he began to plant mature saplings of wild trees in spaces between laterite rocks. During the summer he would fetch water in cans lashed to his motorbike from a source a kilometre away. The reasonably successful travel business was seeing all its surpluses flow into this impossible dream. Landowners nearby found in Abdul Kareem an exit route. For decades their rocky spreads had produced nothing and here was a crazy man willing to buy them. As his family watched in panic amazement, Abdul Kareem bought 32 acres of a rocky slope.

For three summers, he nursed his plants with water ferried from afar. And then nature sent him a feed back. “In the third year, when my plantation was but of young adult trees, the water level in the well rose!’ he says. “That itself seemed an end for me and I began to plant the whole extent in a frenzy.” He chose a variety of plants plucked from the wild and let nature do the rest. He learnt that you enable nature, not direct it. Birds began to arrive and discharge all manner of seeds. Weeds grew and amidst them rare herbs and medicinal plants – none chosen by Kareem.  Water levels in Kaliyanam, Varranjnyur and other villages within a 10km radius rose. The once barren hill was now a water sponge.

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He has never weeded his acres, never lopped a tree, never swept the leaves, never hunted game, never selected a species and of course, never used a chemical of any kind. “My rewards are the highly mineralised, herbalised water, the fragrant air, the daily walks through the woods, a healthy life and an enormous peace,” he says. He has for over ten years, lived in a house, built in the forest. Not a shred of plastic or paper is seen anywhere. They are a part of his long list of no- nos along with cars, noise, smoking, fire or partying.

Read and learn more about Abdul Kareem’s forest Click here

A Commerce Ex-lecturer Convert 25 Acres of Barren Land Into A Lush Green Farm?


How Did A Commerce Ex-lecturer Convert 25 Acres of Barren Land Into A Lush Green Farm? 

By Aarti Kelkar-Khambete  THEBETTERINDIA

This story of the untiring efforts of a commerce ex-lecturer to convert twenty-five acres of a barren piece of land into a self sustainable green farm, provides an ideal example of a model for rainwater harvesting and demonstrates how persistence and the sheer determination to go on till the end, can yield miraculous results.

AR FARMS AT PRESENT (Courtesy Thebetterindia.com)

From Mangalore in Heroor village, Kundapur, Udupi district in Karnataka is an example of the sheer grit and determination of a person with no background in agriculture, in fact a Commerce ex-lecturer, who through his persistent experimentation and research was able to apply principles of rainwater harvesting in his farm, which led to miraculous results and to the transformation of a barren piece of land into a model for rainwater harvesting.

Richard Rebello. It is indeed difficult to believe that the farm which is now full of vegetation, tall green grass, cashew nut trees, coconut, pepper, pineapples, areca nut, banana, was once a barren land without water. The two borewells and the three open wells in the farm are now full of water.

To read the full story Click here 

Comments : Sir Richard Rebello is a  role model farmer for all . We need to make sure our farmers are educated in these type of agricultural methods which helps us harvest with rain water. Most of our crops get destroyed every year due to lack of water. Rain water harvesting is one of most vital techniques that needs to be adapted . Its not the lack of water that we have , its the lack of techniques the farmers adapt to save and manage water.

Crop Rotations-How to Build A Perfect Rotation Schedule


Crop Rotation And Its Importance

Crop rotation is the practice of growing a series of dissimilar/different types of crops in the same area in sequential seasons.

Crop rotation gives various benefits to the soil. A traditional element of crop rotation is the replenishment of nitrogen through the use of green manure in sequence with cereals and other crops. Crop rotation also mitigates the build-up of pathogens and pests that often occurs when one species is continuously cropped, and can also improve soil structure and fertility by alternating deep-rooted and shallow-rooted plants.

The goals of crop rotation are to help manage soil fertility and also to help avoid or reduce problems with soil borne diseases and some soil-dwelling insects, such as corn root worms.

Balancing soil fertility

Different crops have different nutrient requirements and affect soil balance differently. Some, like corn and tomatoes, are heavy feeders that quickly deplete soil nitrogen and phosphorus. Thus, if you plant corn in the same spot year after year, that plot of soil will run low on nitrogen and phosphorus more quickly than other parts of your garden will. By changing the location of corn each year, you’ll be able to renew the plot where it grew the preceding year, so your soil won’t get out of balance.

There are other crops that also use up nitrogen rapidly. They tend to be the leafy and fruiting crops, such as lettuce, cabbage, and tomatoes. In contrast, root vegetables and herbs are light feeders. Peas, beans, and other legumes add nitrogen to the soil but need lots of phosphorus.
The general rule of thumb for balancing out soil nutrients is to avoid planting the same general category of crop (root, legume, and leafy/fruiting) successively in the same place. It’s best to follow nitrogen-fixing legumes such as peas or beans with nitrogen-loving leaf or fruiting crops such as lettuce or tomatoes. Then, follow the heavy feeding crops with light-feeding root crops.
Disease and pest prevention
If you have a large home garden, you may want to plan your crop rotation on the basis of plant families rather than on nutrient needs. This can help in your overall program of avoiding diseases and pests, because crops in the same botanical family tend to suffer from the same pest and disease problems. For example, Colorado potato beetles like to eat potato plants, but they also enjoy feasting on tomato leaves and eggplant foliage. Since these beetles overwinter in the soil, if you plant eggplant in a spot where you grew potatoes the year before, you could be inviting a beetle problem for your eggplants from the day they’re planted. Likewise, several serious bacterial and fungal diseases overwinter in plant debris in the soil.
Choosing your crop rotation plan
If you have a small garden, you may not be able to set up an effective rotation by crop family. That’s also true if you grow only a few kinds of crops. In that case, stick to a basic soil-balancing rotation. But if you have a large plot and grow many different crops, you may enjoy the challenge of setting up a rotation by crop family. Refer to the chart on the previous page to learn which crops belong to the same family.

Keep in mind that cover crops can be included in a rotation plan to discourage specific types of pests and to improve soil. For example, beetle grubs thrive among most vegetables, but not in soil planted in buckwheat or clover. A season of either crop can greatly reduce grub populations and at the same time will increase soil organic matter content.
Rotating Vegetable Families
Susceptibility to pests and diseases runs in plant families. Leave at least two, and preferably three or more, years between the times you plant members of the same crop family in an area of your garden. When planning a rotation scheme, refer to this rundown of the seven family groups most often planted in vegetable gardens along with ideas for rotating them.
Onions, garlic: 
Rotate with legumes; avoid planting in soil with undecomposed organic matter.
Carrots, parsnips, parsley, dill, fennel, coriander:
Moderate feeders. Precede with any other plant family; condition soil with compost before planting. Follow with legumes or heavy mulch.
Broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, kohlrabi, radishes, turnips:
High level of soil maintenance required for good root health. Heavy feeders. Precede with legumes; follow by first cultivating the soil to expose pests for predation, then spread compost.
Cucumbers, gourds, melons, squash, pumpkins, watermelons:
For improved pest control, proceed with winter rye or wheat; follow with legumes.
Beans, peas, clovers, vetches:
Beneficial to soil; few pest problems. Rotate alternately with all other garden crops when possible.
Plant before tomato or squash-family crops to control weeds and improve soil’s ability to handle water.
Eggplant, peppers, potatoes, tomatoes:
Heavy feeders with many fungal enemies. Precede with cereal grain or grass; follow with legumes.
Image taken from ecoscraps.com ,fao.org
Article source : wikipedia.org , organicgardening.com
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