Usually people take an ignorant stand in the matter of setting kitchen garden at homes, and the reason behind this is laziness. Now we realize that the price we are paying for this lethargy is high. It is quite natural that , even after having nature’s bounty as good soil and sources of water, different regions have to depend on each other for sourcing many products especially vegetables. These vegetables brought from other regions are not only priced high but also makes us prone to many diseases due to the use of pesticides. A practical solution to all these is to prepare a vegetable garden in our backyard itself. This does not need extra effort or energy or more time. A little bit of time in the morning and evening is only needed for this. Also all the family members can contribute to this farming. Children in the family should be involved in this as the kids get to know a lot about nature and love nature. The vegetable that we produce not only taste good but also has credibility.
In rural areas you get more space to prepare a kitchen garden, but in cities there are space limitations. Amidst these limitations kitchen gardens are gaining popularity in cities too. The open terrace can be converted into a very good kitchen garden, which provides profit, health as well as entertainment.
The soil used for kitchen garden should be fertile enough. If the soil has good sand component, then use good amount of organic manure. The place where the kitchen garden is set should get enough sunlight and water. So the place where direct sunlight falls should be taken for farming. The areas where the shade of the house falls should be avoided. Never cultivate anything near the place where clothes are washed, as it adversely affects the plant as well as the soil. The southern side of the plot where there is enough sunlight is ideal for a kitchen garden. Plants like drumstick, lemon, curry leaf plant etc. can be planted at the western side without causing any hindrance to other vegetable plants. Vegetables that need shade like ginger, yam, turmeric etc. can be grown in the western part or in shady areas. Vegetables like long beans, lady’s finger, chillies etc. are grown during the onset of monsoon season. Winter season is the best to cultivate tomatoes and Indian bean (kidney bean) . Pumpkin, ash gourd, snake gourd, cucumber etc. are grown best in summer season. Also red amaranthus (spinach) is cultivated in summer. The same vegetables should not be repeatedly cultivated in the same place. While growing different types of vegetables, the pest infestation of the soil can be prevented. While growing tomatoes, brinjal and chillies , in the soil, there should not be water logging. The seeds are germinated in pots and later transferred to the soil. But in the case of lady’s finger, long beans, cucumber etc. the seeds are sown directly in the soil and cultivated.
When we prepare a kitchen garden and grow vegetables just for the house hold, use only organic manure. Cow dung is good organic manure. Also excreta of hen and goat are good manure that increases the yield. Gulmohar can be planted and leaf manure can be made out of it. Also the kitchen waste can be used as fertilizer. During summer season the plants should be watered nicely. Avoid using chemical pesticides. If any plant diseases are noticed, then pluck the plant and destroy it or spray natural pesticide like decoction made from tobacco. By taking in to consideration of the above factors, a good kitchen garden with lots of fresh vegetables can be made and thereby a healthy society is created.