Five acres of land in Plavila near Neyyattinkara will see a range of vegetables being cultivated using noted agriculturalist Subhash Palekar’s Zero Budget Natural Farming.
The project, mooted by the Neyyattinkara Municipality with support from the Agriculture Department, will be implemented in the land provided by NIMS Medicity. The Municipality plans to utilise Rs.5 lakh from its current year’s budget. Special sanction had been sought from the government for carrying out the programme, Chairman S.S. Jayakumar told The Hindu.
“Since the project was implemented in a private land, we need to get special permission. The issue was taken up with Agriculture Minister and he has given an assurance to prevail upon the government to give sanction,” he said. The civic body expected to get clearance from the State government within two weeks, he added.
As per the plan, the Municipality would provide subsidy to women living near the project site to take up cultivation of vegetables using the natural farming technique, an emerging method of farming using dung and urine of local breeds of cows, which were high sources of nutrients and microbes.
This method of farming was highly prevalent in several parts of the country and even practiced in Palakkad district of the State.
The dung and urine generated by one cow could produce manure for cultivation in five acres of land. The produce, mixed with jaggery and water, would be fermented for two to three days. The farmer would then spray the mixture on the crop and little amount to the field, he added.
In Plavila, in the initial stage, vegetables such as bitter gourd, lady’s finger, brinjal, chilly, and cowpea would be cultivated.
The civic body also had plans to set up an outlet near the farm site to market the products, Mr. Jayakumar said.