Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Summer 2014

Summer is very hot this year at 40 degree centigrade. So far no summer rain, hope to receive some rain in next week.Watering is the only major activity now.I use flooded irrigation and it wastes lot of water, but other solutions like sprinkler, drip irrigation being costly, still sticks to this method. I have some plans of trying trench method which is suggested by Bhaskar Save and Subash Palekar.Digging trenches against the slope of the land, will also preserve water. I also have heard that the plants near the trenches never gets affected by summer. In any case plans to small rain pits throughout the farm.
Ground cover and mulch has improved, water retention, but still a long way to go. I can see earth worm castings throughout the land and hence water retention of the soil has improved. In areas where watering was done, once in a while, that area remains really green. Open well has some water and I love the taste and smell of it.

Neighbour wells has dried and some of them take water from this well for drinking and I was so happy to see that. Since well is deep and it is stored in earth, water is very cool.

Banana area is under stress, since this area hasn't been irrigated for 3 weeks now.  Mangoes have fruited reasonably well..but lot of fruits are falling down because of heat? I could see that the local varieties of mangoes are yielding much better. for e.g the small 'chandrakkaran' another variety has good amount of mangoes.

As usual, in the summer, white ants are there in full swing and do a good job..

Coconut harvesting is done person single handedly did this task using a long pole, his wife and another boy collected and kept it at 4 different places...2700 coconuts in total..he charged 1 rupees per coconut for plucking and keeping it at one place..Coconut prices are good, one big coconut is sold at 15/- and per kg with water price is 26/- while in the open market it is sold at 34/-.

Harvested turmeric which I had cultivated in 3 raised bed. I did all the harvesting and maintained the bed so that it can be reused in the next season.
Vegetable area is being mulched and dried cowdung is put on this bed.

Cows are not having green grass..the hybrid one has become skinny but the local variety is eating even the dried grass and keeps healthy..both of them survived foot and mouth disease
House is almost ready for occupation except that there is no electricity..

Meanwhile some planning is going for next rainy season..last season's rice cultivation gave me 23Kgs of rice and it tasted very good and hence planning to go for 0.5 acre cultivation in the next season.

Interplanting of coconut still not happening, still lot of gap between coconut trees. so planning to put mangoes, cashew nuts, sitaphal, moringa and glyricedia etc.

                                                                Earth worm castings

                                         Chandrakkaran mango

Rice field

                                             Rice field
                                          Rice field with heavy straw mulch

                                           Rice field with cow pea grown as cover crop
Turmeric raised bed after harvest

                                                Local cow
                                                 Hybrid cow

                                          Banana under water stress

                                          Open well

                                         Still have some water - last time it  dried up in February

                                         Small mango tree started fruiting

House back side view

                                        House front view

                                        Coconut area

                                           Coconut area with no watering

                                         Coconut area with watering

                                           Tree with good yield

                                           Tree without any yield..summer affects some trees very badly

                                            white ants doing good job


Marcos GG said...

great! thanks for sharing!

Unknown said...

excellent interest observed in farming. Only observation is that spending huge sum on constructing house and open well instead worth to spend this money on providing good water source for the farm. These structures made the farm once again concrete jungle. you should have used the straw grass like me

Ramki Bondada said...

Watch mine:

Nandakumar said...

Thanks for the comments..true, even I had plans to construct a house with tiled roof, but there was issues of security, maintenance finally went for it. Open well is for water at home.

Nandakumar said... have a lot of crops..better to share your experience in detail over a blog or a web site

Anonymous said...

good to read all the updates.......2700 coconuts is fantastic, the house looks good, will try & come during the rains when i come to see my parents

Anonymous said...

Good work again.....BTW did u try the croutons technique as water indicators of the farm by Bhaskar Save.....

Nandakumar said...

2700 coconuts is in the peak season, I don't have data to tell the yield in an year, will collect that. Yes Arjun, it will be great to meet you.

Nandakumar said...

I haven't planted croton, since I am managing things remotely and anyway, there is water shortage. I still have plans to do farm without watering, provided coconut, mango, banana and other fruit trees can manage without water..

Saw your site, it looks good. Please post complete videos of Kailashamurthy's farm, I think he does not water the farm?

Anonymous said...

Unfotunately I recorded only short videos during my visit to Mr.Murthy´s farm.I am sure if u were able to access it but please find it here....

Mr.Murthy had drip irrigation in his farm though the usage of water was minimal in his farm