Friday, November 12, 2010

How I started my experiments?

As the job became boring, thoughts about an early retirement came up. Also thought that there is no point in struggling again to make more money. Buying some land and doing farming became an attraction. May be because of the village background with which I was brought up. Even though we were not farmers, in the village where I was born and brought up, farming was all there, with a river flowing nearby and long stretch of paddy fields. The road to our school had both sides paddy fields,but now it is all gone houses came on both sides.

During one of the discussions, one friend  mentioned about reading an article about organic farming that came in a daily. This article described that farming like a forest approach is the best way to do and forest is the most fertile land. He also mentioned about the name of the author as Dayal. Searched in the internet and got some references about him and left the topic there.

One day reading the malayalam daily manorama came across the book 'Urvarathayude Sangeetham' (Song of Fertility) by K.V.Dayal in 'pusthaka parichayam' section of a malayalam daily. In the next trip to trichur checked this book in DC books, current and another number of books stalls but could not get it, again searched for this book in the next couple of visits without much luck. Once again while searching found out his phone number in one site (think it is OFAI..) and called him. He was happy to hear my interests and asked the address and promised to send one copy and later send the money. This kind of behaviour from one of the author of the book was quite new to me, so felt very happy about it.

Then came the book..and sent him the money by MO. It was an inspiring book and got some good basics of natural/organic farming, read the book again and there was mention of Masanobu Fukuoka, Dhabholkar...etc.. and also the publisher of the book was Altermedia located in trichur. Went to this book stall once and could get One straw revolution (Otta Vaikkol Viplavam)...and the journey was steady now. Subsequently read, Natural Farming - theory and practice, Back to Nature etc...and became a fan of Masanobu Fukuoka. Subscibed yahoo mailing list and got guidance/questions clarified from many people all around the world and it was interesting. Read Dhabolka'r - plenty for all and got very good insight about science behind the natural farming. Came to know about Subash Palekar's zero budget farming and got his three books on the subject and it gave a very good idea about multicropping, mulching and about Jeewamritha and the book was quite inspiring.

There was a list of farmer's in Urvarathayude Sangeetham and visited Iyyunni chettan's farm with father-in-law. Iyynni chettan is in his 70's and came from a big farmer's family. He had done his Bachelor of  Science degree from Christ College Irinjalakuda and he didn't look for any job rather started looking after his family farm. This is a natural farm and does not use any animal manure and the yield of the coconut trees were very good..then onwards it was visiting farms, talking to farmers and then reading farming books..and started looking for the land in Palakkad.

After talking to many people who is on the similar path, two types of people were found. One set of people who is completely into farming and wanted to make a living out of farming and live like farmers, these are people who is very clear in their thinking. Other set of people have some backup income/activities which will substitute  their income from farming. After discussions with many people, general opinion was making a living from farming was difficult, and to completely enjoy farming, we have to live/work like a farmer. I was not confident about this since even my family had adjusted to city life. So decided to do farming as part time and became partner of a design service company with one of my class mate.


Jayadeep(JDP) said...

Hello Nandakumar, very inspiring to hear your story, and I am impressed with your pragmatic approach. I am heading in the same direction and will contact you sometime soon.

Nandakumar said...

Thanks Jayadeep

Brooke said...

Glad you decided against early retirement. A lot of good farming info in these blogs. Thank you! I can share with you some slogans and sayings about farming you'd probably love: Farming Slogans

Nandakumar said...

Thanks Brooke for the comments and link.