Raghavendra Bhat farmer
Chiguru Farm is a 25 acre active farm land that is situated on the fringes of the Bilakal Forest on the south of Bannerghatta National Park. It is an hour and a half drive from the south of Bangalore, located at a distance of 45km from the NICE Road and Kanakpura Road Junction. The farm perimeter is protected by a solar fence to keep the occasional wild animals out. The primary crops cultivated here are banana, mango, lemons, coconuts, aracenut & roses. The farm also has a wide variety of fruit trees. Seasonal veggies are also cultivated here.
All pathways are lined with silver oak and teak trees, that lends a romantic feel to the experience. The farm has been going completely organic since 2015. Just outside the farm is a small government pond that holds water throughout the year. Within the farm, intensive water harvesting and storage options have been created, by digging 3 bodies that can store water during the rainy season. The rain water gutters have been designed in a way to carry water to either one of the 3 water bodies. Since these storage ponds have been built the small ponds in the nearby villages have water throughout the year.
The chemical fertilizers have been replaced with organic inputs like neem cake and jeevamrutha among others. Also natural pest control via planting chillies in between the roses and using fly traps instead of pesticides to prevent crop damage are employed. The fly traps help protect both the coconut and the mango crops.
The general rule of thumb is that we need 1 cow per acre of farm that you want to make organic, we currently have 4 cows and are looking to gradually increase their number. The cow manure is directly employed in vermicomposting all of the organic by-products. The vermicompost that is produced using earthworms to break down the organic by-products is sufficient for the farm. The farm also plays host to some chicks and hens.