KOCHI: The Ernakulam Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) of the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) has developed a soil-less mix that can be used as an alternative to soil in farming. The mix is specifically slated to benefit farmers and gardeners who are facing a scarcity of good quality soil. It can be purchased from the institute.
The mix is made of composted press mud, a by-product from sugar mills along with coir pith, powdered cow dung, neem cake and other biocontrol agents.“The soil-less mix will be a stimulus to backyard farming in the city where availability of quality soil is a concern,” said Dr Shinoj Subramannian, Head of the KVK.
“Saplings can be directly planted to a 10 kg bag of the mix and no separate grow bags are required. A bag weighing 10 kg is priced at `125,” he added. “Normally, at least 150 kg of soil is required to grow plants in 30 grow bags but you will be needing much less on switching to the mix,” Dr Shinoj said. Those interested in producing the mix may contact 8281757450.