Farming and Agriculture

Urban gardening is making people healthier and stronger in Kolkata

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People in Kolkata have found a way to battle coronavirus by increasing immunity through urban gardening. Want to know more? Continue reading.

Unhappy with adulterated food in the market

Rekha Ghosh lives in north Kolkata. The 70-year-old who had spent her childhood days in village used to consume home grown vegetables. The homemaker was not satisfied with the adulterated and chemical laced vegetables available in the market. She was looking for an alternative before she hit upon the concept of urban gardening. She felt that it was the best method to provide healthy food to her family even in the metro city like Kolkata, “I was worried about the chemical laced and adulterated vegetables available in the market. I started urban gardening a few years ago and it has given me tremendous results. My family now feeds upon healthy and organic vegetables,” she says.

“The concept of urban gardening is very important in big cities where there is a shortage of space. It is really productive to utilize the terrace of the houses for growing vegetables organically and consume the healthy items. We get fresh leaf vegetables brinjal and other vegetables from here and do not have to depend much on the market.”

Young homemakers also inclined towards urban gardening

Even young homemakers are opting for rooftop gardening realising the importance of it. Payel Bhattacharya who lives in an upscale locality of Kolkata says that she started urban gardening to give a healthy diet to her minor son, “I love flowers and used to plant them on the terrace of my house. I have a minor son and was concerned about the adulterated food in the market. We all know about the spray being done on food items but still we are consuming them. I was looking for a solution. I thought of using a terrace of my house for roof-top gardening.”

Training by DRCSC proved helpful

She says the training by Development Research Communications and Services Centre( DRCSC), a non-profit working for sustainable agriculture and alternative livelihood trained her in urban gardening, “I was looking for a place where I could learn more about growing organic food items on the terrace. I then came in contact with DRCSC. I took training from there and I have learnt a lot. I have learned how to make fertilizers from vegetables waste, vermicompost, how to take care of plants and natural items that can be used as pesticides and also how to do farming. I began to implement those techniques on my terrace and I am completely satisfied with the results.”
Payel said that she earns by livelihood by offering training on urban gardening nowadays.

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Correct technique of urban gardening

Several people trained by DRCSC on urban gardening conceded that it has helped them to follow correct techniques of urban gardening, “I was doing everything casually and without any system before taking the training. Whatever, I planted whether vegetables or other items used to get infected with blight. I used medicines as cure but stopped them after realizing that they were laced with chemicals and bad for the body. I then took training at DRCSC and learned a lot from there. I learnt how to make treat plants organically like making a paste out of crushing ginger, garlic, spice and mixing it in 10 litres of water and spraying in the fields to remove the insects. As a result, my field is free of insects,” said Biplab Nag, former air force personnel who reside in Howrah district, a twin city of Kolkata.

DRCSC training helps in growing healthy food and enhancing livelihood

Senior officials of DRCSC say that the training of urban gardening has been offered not only to help people grow and consume healthy diet but also to create livelihood opportunities, “We have also started an urban garden course to teach the urban people about gardening who can earn by giving similar services to other people in the city. Several students trained by us are already working as service providers in Kolkata and earning around Rs 20,000 per month. We have trained more than 300 students and over 70 percent are connected with the gardening,” said Sourav Ghosh, Unit leader, DRCSC.

Get in touch!

Sourav Ghosh
DRCSC
58A Dharmatola Road, Bosepukur, Kasba.
Kolkata – 700042
Landline – 03324427311
Mob-9432013248
email:souravg@drcsc.org
www.drcsc.org
Keywords: DRCSC, Urban gardening, Chalgenius, Kolkata
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