Hope you all had great holidays and a fresh start to the new year! Even though Sudhakar and I live far away from busy cities, we still needed a tiny break to slow down and relax and that’s what we did with our parents to welcome the new year 🙂
We have decided to combine our last two month’s update:
We sold off our two bulls Raja and Kathir in November and welcomed a new one from our farmer friend Om Prakash. We haven’t named this handsome hunk yet. He was a sweet gentle bull when we met him at Om’s farm but has taken the role of alpha male here with our cows and is terrorizing everyone with his huge hump. He doesn’t like me especially and keeps shaking his head trying to headbutt me every time I go near him so I stay away from him for now. Hope he warms up to me soon 😦
We started making Therattipal – similar to Paalkova with our cows milk. We stopped selling curd once the monsoon started because locals here don’t consume curd in cooler weather. We make only one or two bottles every day with fresh milk and organic jaggery powder. Just two ingredients and it tastes absolutely delicious. You can order from our online store here
Our young cow Mukti gave birth to her first calf in December and we decided to name her Margazhi. She is fully brown unlike her fellow calves and looks like a deer calf at times.
Monsoon season = Paddy cultivation
We transplanted our rice saplings in the first week of December. Kichili Samba, a native white rice and Karunkuruvai, a native red rice variety. We’ve been following some aspects of SRI method of paddy cultivation – less saplings, 1 feet distance and less flooding of fields.
We have weeded the fields twice now. The Kichili Samba saplings look healthy but the Karunkuruvai plot looks sparse.
Though we have been raising cows, we have never prepared panchagavya. The idea of using precious cow’s milk, curd and ghee never seemed to make sense. But we want to try and see if it gives better results so this year we have planned to experiment paddy cultivation with jeevamrutam and panchagavya.
The Malabar neem and some fruit trees that we planted have grown enough to introduce another crop underneath them. Once monsoon ended, it was easier to make beds. We stay true to our philosophy of reducing use of huge machinery as much as possible in our farm. We employed two men to remove all the tough weeds and made beds inbetween the trees. The wet soil made it slightly easy for the men to make beds.
We have around 20+ beds now. Some will be planted with Mexican sunflower, Vettiver and Glyricidia for biomass. We are planning to introduce turmeric, ginger, tapioca, gongura, banana and papaya here.