The first time I heard the word Indigenous (with reference to plants) I knew for sure they were referring to the genus of plants originating in India!! Well, I did realize that I should refer a dictionary and not come up with my own interpretations!!
So what is Indigenous? Indigenous means originating or occurring naturally in a particular place; native. (To me, who stay’s in India, the misinterpretation and correct interpretation didn’t really make a difference though 😉 )
So, Why should we go for Indigenous plants?
Because only and only indigenous plants help you attract the fauna!! By fauna, I mean, the birds, bees and other insects!
So how do we identify these native plants?
The simplest and most useful trick I use here in India – I check if there is a name for the plant in local language. If the local language has a name for the plant it definitely is a local/native/indigenous plant.
If I know only the English and/or Botanical name of the plant, I know its not indigenous to India or my State!
Gardener’s Confession: Yes, I do have a few plants that are not indigenous, but a majority of them are Indigenous!! 🙂 😉 🙂
I am often asked, what are the best vegetables to grow at home/balcony/terrace? Well, all!!
So how do you go about deciding which vegetables do you want to grow?
Firstly, always factor in your interest and preference!
Secondly, the season. There are many veges that grow throughout the year but there are also equal number of them who prefer a particular season!
Thirdly, consider the available space in your balcony/terrace.
Now comes the biggest challenge – You’ve a list of 10-15 veges which grow well in a particular season, you’ve enough space for them and you like them as well. So now how do you choose?
Always remember, if it is your first time, things may not workout exactly the way you want them to. So always go the conservative way. Imagine you can harvest a very little quantity everyday. So what would you do with it? I’ll illustrate.
- What if you harvest just one cucumber? Nothing wrong with it as you can eat it right away or you can use it in a salad with few other veges.
- Now, what if you harvest only 5-6 okra in a day and next ones would be ready for harvest only after a week. What would you do? All my south Indian readers are going – we will use in Sambar or in morkutaan!! 😉 😛 Well so if you can use a very little quantity of okra efficiently, go for it or else just reject it!
- Similarly with beans – What if you harvested just 5-6 pods of french beans? You can probably use it in fried rice/vegetable pulav/Biryani.
- But what if you harvest just 5-6 pods of broad beans or cluster beans? How would you use them? Well I don’t have an idea so I would reject such veges. But if you know how to use them, go for it!!
Now, before you decide to plant any particular vegetable, ask yourself, What would you do with an small harvest? Save yourself the pain of growing the veges and then not able to use them properly!! 🙂
Happy Gardening 🙂
Surprising as it may seem you can manage your Garden very efficiently with the existing quantity of water usage. Garden by no means is demanding, especially when it comes to water! So whether you’re facing a water crunch or you believe in water conservation, these tricks will definitely help you save water.
#1 Always Mulch the Soil: Mulching helps to prevent water evaporation from the soil thereby requiring less water. To know more about Mulching click here.
#2 Use Fresh Cow-dung: Cow dung is excellent to prevent water evaporation and keep the soil well hydrated. Mix 1kg of cow-dung in 5 liters of water and use it to water the plants. This acts as excellent compost, mulch and water retention technique. You can also try making amrutjal. Click here to know more about amrutjal. (Disclaimer : Please do not use fresh cow dung in monsoon/rainy season. The moisture in the soil combined with humidity in the atmosphere will lead to fungal growth.)
#3 Water from Mopping the Floor: It is a great idea to Mop the floor with plain water (without any chemical floor cleaners) and then use it for watering the plants.
#4 Water from washing clothes: You may not be aware but there are many 100% eco-friendly detergents available in the market. So you can use the water that drains out after washing/rinsing the clothes and use it for watering the plants. In fact its a great idea to connect your washing Machine’s drainage pipe to another smaller pipe that leads directly to your garden or pots.
#5 Water from Washing Your Fruits & Vegetables: It is a great idea to wash your fruits, vegetables and other food items like cereals and pulses in a container and use the same for watering the plants.
These are my top 5 water saving techniques. Please add your ideas in the comment section below!
Happy Gardening 🙂
Bored of Gardening Tips?
Want some Action?
Fun Starts 21st July 2017 as we will together Design your Garden!!
Coming Up a 11-Day D-I-Y Series starting 21st July 2017 where we Create, Upgrade, Modify, Design and Redesign Your Garden!!
How Does it Work?
I’ll have a series of Blog Post (1 post a day) where we step by step set up your Garden!
Right from selecting a place to selecting right kind of plants; from Garden Decor right till designing we will be covering everything!
The best thing about this fest, I’ll be available all throughout those 11 days right here and on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Google plus for any help or suggestion that you’ll need! We can have live interactive session through Skype and Facebook Video Calls!
So be there as we head into our Gardening Zone and celebrate Life! 🙂
Happy Gardening! 🙂