In April 2016, at the height of his profession inside the Silicon Valley, San Francisco-primarily based Vivek Shah determined to quit his process and go back to India together with his spouse Brinda who holds a Masters in Printmaking.
“Living in San Francisco made us lots of extra aware of our environment. Being full-time professionals ourselves, we began realizing how our way of life became fluctuating closer to turning into unhealthy because of our schedules,” says Vivek.
The couple’s first step to take price in their health turned into to begin getting to know to prepare dinner collectively.
“And yet, one among our largest struggles turned into, we didn’t understand wherein the meals we have been ingesting every unmarried day turned into coming from,” stocks Vivek.
The location the couple resided in became full of tall fruit-bearing timber. It reminded Vivek of his adolescence while life changed into simpler. Climbing bushes barefoot, scraping your knees and palms, and the joy of plucking fruit off and then devouring them.
He wanted to make that pleasure a part of his life again and developing their own meals changed into how they thought they may enjoy it again. The couple set out on an adventure to analyze the ideas of permaculture in a nation now not ways faraway from California. It was this experience that strengthened they’re clear up to return to India and set up their farm.
“When we had been traveling for the direction, we got here throughout a strawberry discipline. Just as we were playing the view, we noticed someone wearing a white shielding jumpsuit spraying some liquid on to the vegetation. It sent a kickback down our spines. Imagine if the employees needed to wear a protecting layer to save you the facet-outcomes in their spraying chemical substances, we were eating the meals that become being grown like that. It now not best affected the consumers, the growers but additionally the surroundings at big. This was our turning point.”
Interestingly, there was no opposition. Their households were supportive of their preference and past elated that the couple had decided to come back home.
“We had no background in agriculture. But the course we did helped us immensely in information the numerous techniques we may want to adopt to construct a natural and sustainable farm. We determined to kickstart our adventure via growing what we favored to consume first. Being Gujjus, it needed to be mangoes,” he laughs.
In 2017, an hour and a half drive far from Ahmedabad, they bought a 10-acre land positioned on the outskirts of Nadiad, Central Gujarat, to create a farm which might now not simplest satisfy the wishes of their kitchen and cause them to unbiased of the marketplace but also take up industrial operations.
And that’s how Brindavan happened. From making sure soil fertility with strategies consisting of inexperienced manuring and managed to graze to harvesting rainwater through pits and trenches, the duo practice techniques that help them utilize the farm assets to their most capacity.
From pearl millet (bajra), wheat, potatoes, moringa, bananas, papaya, Jamun to wooden, the couple grows vegetation that variety from commercial to semi-industrial.
A mix of commercial and experimental farming, a number of their other strategies which include plug nurseries, no-till vegetable farming, planting windbreaks, bird-loving plant life, butterfly and bee loving flowers, are directed closer to pest and soil management in some manner or the alternative.
They have dug trenches and pits on 10 in step with cent of the general land to capture each drop of rainwater that falls on the ten-acre farm. This guarantees that each accurate monsoon cycle facilitates harvest 5 to ten lakh liters of water.
The duo has additionally constructed a natural home with soil, cow dung and stone. The soil to build the earth walls of this home become also sourced from the farm itself when they dug a pond. One of the reasons to dig this pond become additionally to tackle the issue of effluent water that a neighborhood contractor becomes letting into the field.
“We were stunned due to the fact we had been trying out satisfactory to not allow any form of chemical to enter our farm. We decided to address this by way of accumulating this water in a pond. We coated the pond with water-purifying kinds of plants that might cast off the impurities earlier than it made it to the pond, which captures 1.5 to two lakh liters of water.”
Aiming to show this pond into a wildlife pond, Brinda and Vivek are soon going to introduce fish and ducks in it. Vivek is likewise running on building a larger water-remedy plant that could in the end expand into a secondary commercial enterprise.
Instead of the usage of pesticides or concoctions to preserve pests at bay, the couple makes use of indispensable natural pest control techniques at the farm like growing aromatic vegetation which includes tulsi, lemongrass, etc. On the outer limitations of the sphere. This assist create a protecting shield and hold fruit flies and pests at bay. Another technique to ensure that pest assaults do now not cause whole loss, is intercropping or multi-cropping which is the process of growing two or extra crops on the identical piece of land. To ensure that now not a single leaf at the farm is burned, all of the farm waste is processed to make compost.