With a bit of hard work and passion one can grow most of the vegetables, greens, flowers and some fruits that a nuclear family needs on a terrace garden cultivated on a building constructed on a 30X40 site. They can generate all the manure needed for the garden from the wet organic waste generated in the house through drum composting method.
University of Agricultural Sciences has displayed a practical model of the terrace garden in the ongoing two- day “Urban Krishi Mela”, that started at the GKVK campus on Sunday. The terrace garden is developed using used plastic cans, plastic bags, vertical grill stands, plastic drums, pots and worn out baskets. Vegetables like tomatoes, green chilies, capsicum chilies, brinjals, pumpkin, cucumber, ridge gourd etc, fruits like pomegranate and banana and a few varieties of flowers are grown in the garden.
Dr. HC Prakash, one of the professors of the university, said, “Most of the vegetables can be grown on the terrace garden with some initial one-time investment on pots, vertical stands, soil and manure. One can generate enough compost for the manure from the wet waste generated in the house. As very little water would be required for terrace garden one has to spend a little on the saplings and can grow pesticide-free organic vegetables for the rest of their lives”.
Prakash says one can generate around 75 kg of compost once every 75 days with the help of a specially designed drum compost and that would be sufficient for the terrace garden.
All the wet organic waste including the dry leaves generated by the roadside trees should be dumped into the drum, which can hold up to 200 kg.
The drums should be kept closed for three weeks and one has to ensure that there is sufficient moisture during that period. Some liquid oozes out of the drum through the holes made in it. The liquid can be collected and stored as it helps the plants grow better when it is sprayed on them. After three weeks, some cow dung should be sprinkled on the decayed matter and that will convert the decayed matter into compost within a few weeks.
One can also opt for wormi compost by putting earth worms in the drum instead of cow dung after the wet waste has decayed sufficiently.
“Organic matter is very precious as it helps in sustaining some or the other lifeforms. We should not waste it, Prakash added.