Friday, 27 September 2013

Manures - Fermented Buttermilk & Coconut Milk Solution

In our Agriculture for Everybody blog series, we are going to see a manure that can easily be made and can be used even for home based Vegetables & Crops.

Required Ingredients

S.No.Ingredient NameQty in Litres/Kgs
1Fermented Buttermilk5 Litres
2Coconut Milk5 Litres

  • For Home Use, instead of huge volumes, it is okay to have less volume by maintaining the ratio 1:1.
  • Please note that the stick (neem stick is better or any pole) used for mixing the ingredients should be cleaned before & after the usage so as to avoid maggots formations in the manure.

Method of Preparation
  1. Mix both the Fermented Buttermilk & Coconut Milk and keep them in a shaded place for 1 week.

Method of Storage
  1. The manure should be kept in the shade and covered with a wire mesh or plastic mosquito net to prevent houseflies from laying eggs and the formation of maggots (worms) in the solution. This is applicable during the preparation as well as during the shelf life of the manure as well.

How long can we store the Manure?
  1. Not Applicable

How to use the Manure?
  1. The manure needs to be sprayed after mixing 1 Litres of manure with 10 Litres of Water.

When to use the Manure?
  1. The manure should be mixed thoroughly twice daily (in the morning & evening) and should be used after 1 week only for better results.
  2. The manure should be applied during the flowering stage.

Monday, 9 September 2013

Farm Design - Design One (Ver 2.1)

In our Agriculture for Everybody blog series, we will address some of the queries we have raised in our previous blog namely Farm Design - An Overview.

We will focus mainly on the spacing for Trees as well as on the spacing for Open Spaces.  Also, we will discuss on the Generic v/s Standard (Specific) Spacing.

First, we will discuss on the options in the spacing of trees.  Either we can go for Standard (Specific) Spacing or Generic Spacing.
  1. The Generic Spacing between Plant-to-Plant is 10 ft.
  2. If we go for Standard (Specific) spacing, then the individual plant will dictate the spacing.  For eg., Coconut needs a standard spacing of 25 ft.
Secondly, regarding the Open Spaces, it is advised to have 12 ft between the rows of the plants.  Again, the Open Spaces can be 24 ft, 36 ft, 48 ft etc (can be any number of ft and not necessarily multiples of 12) and this depends on the individual needs of the farmer and the plant they grow as well.

We have mentioned the spacing between Plant-to-Plant is 10 ft and this may look very crowded.  Here, I want to highlight a general observation and this may be helpful before proceeding further.

I have noticed that there are 2 types of Trees:-
  1. Single Stem Tree - Eg., Coconut, Papaya, Banana etc
  2. Multi Branch Tree - Eg., Mango, Sapota, Lemon etc
Technically, even Single Stem Tree has multiple branches and the branches are basically the crown portion and not in the body.  The disadvantage in Single Stem Tree is that we cannot prune them or control them according to our needs.

Multi Branch Tree can be pruned or controlled to occupy the space that we have.  Alternatively, we can also go for Dwarf Trees as well.

Now we can visualize that 10 ft is good enough for a multi branch tree.  Those who feel the spacing is not good enough, can plant a Single Stem Tree (especially Timber Trees) next to the Multi Branch Tree and follow it with another Multi Branch Tree and repeat the process.