Natural farming since 40 years, Udupi farmer shows the way

 In the era of rapid modernisation and mechanisation in agricultural sector, there is a farmer who grows various types of agricultural and horticultural produces using natural farming method only, in his eight acres of land since 40 years.

Vittal Nayak, aged 56, is no less to any youth in his eagerness to unravel the wonders in farming. Nayak loves to introduce himself as a self-sufficient man, who never wants to risk his greediness at the cost of nature. “I am rarely bothered about the materialistic calculations of profit and loss. My major concern is to take care of the land and the nature that has bestowed upon me the entire bounty of pure atmosphere,” he told Deccan Herald.

The farmer, who resides in Manchi, grows paddy in four acres of land, besides arecanut, cashew, coconut, banana, pepper, betel leaves, teak wood and rose wood plantations in another three to four acres. He also goes for mixed farming by taking up cross cultivation. He grows varieties of vegetables, which includes cucumber, brinjal, tomato, beans etc.

Vittal Nayak manages all the farm fertilisers by using organic fertilizers, which he calls natural fertilizers. He vows that he never wasted a single leaf of any tree or any other parts of the plants and trees in his farm. He utilizes all the fallen leaves, stems and other wastes of plants and trees as fertilizers. “The maintenance cost is very less. Apart from the plant and tree wastes, I also use the animal wastes, such as cow dung and urine and hen pits,” Nayak said.

Gains of organic farming

The farmer is all smiles, when he was asked about his experience over the long association with farming. He could not continue his education owing to family problems. He took up cultivation in the land that was handed over by ancestors. He laments that people are least likely to adopt natural ways of life. The chemical fertilizers are harmful and it decreases the fertility of the soil on earth.

“I have been doing cultivation since the past 40 years using organic fertilizers. My soil has not lost its protein contents as is clearly visible in the healthy growths I get. Occasionally, I supply lime to the soil in order to balance the alkaline content. Or else there is nothing that I feed to the soil other than waste leaves, stems and barks of plants and trees to the soil. The nutritional content in the land is very much the same and the organic waste has played the role of energy revitalizer,’ he says.

Though there is a stream that passes across the farmland, it will dry up after December. Nayak has two wells from which he draws water for his fields. He grows an average of 65 quintal of paddy every year. He keeps six quintal for himself and sells the remaining. He also cultivates nursery in 400x4 feet land area to provide the paddy saplings in the four acres. The dearth of labourers has compelled Vittal Nayak to go for mechanization. “There are no labourers. We are just three in the family and we cannot manage everything. I am forced to adopt mechanization. However, this year I have managed with the manual agriculture,” he added.

He reminds that organic farming is a way of life to take ahead the culture of the land. 

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