Alkaline sandy soil

Respected Members,
                I am Anbu, from vellore , Tamilnadu. I am doing business and recently from past one year I am doing zero budget natural farming after attending Palekarji classes at pollachi. I am fully satisfied with my current paddy cultivations.
              My land is dry type, at the end of hill slopes. And out of my 9acres land , nearby 4acres is looking totally calcium stones+sandy+minimum red soil type. Even I can’t able to find grasses also there.  Now I don’t have irrigation here , and I ll organise irrigation within two to three months. Kindly any one suggest what types of multicropping can be planned next monsoon and what types of multi cropping trees can be planned in near future. And also pls suggest any other Natriral farming suggestions specifically to this area. Thanks in advance .


post some pictures.

If you dont see weeds and grasses, then you may have to top up soil. anyway pictures may give more idea of the situation.

Have your soil tested and post report also. Let us see what forum can help you.

Dear Mr.Sri,
                Thanks for your first suggestion of top up the soil. Kindly suggest how much
    loads of tractor or any other calculation required per acre to transfer the soil. And also pls suggest
    any other organic methods also to make the land fertile.
                    I had not taken any soil tests still.  I am going to do the test, if it will need sure. I am attaching
    the photos of my land for  your reference. Awaiting for your valuable replies.

hello Mr ,Anbu          testing the soil and water is most important. do that immediately.
      during rainy season    sow a mixture of seeds  —[  include quick growing pulses millets greens etc]----- dont spend much on the seeds.    the soil should be densely covered with plants.  plough the plants into the soil after 40  to  50 days  when the plants are still  tender and green.  this method will enrich ur soil with lot of organic matter  in a cheap way.    any other soil amendment can be added  after seeing the soil test report

Pictures look scary. I dont have courage to suggest you anything.
Do you have water availablity? I strongly suspect ground water is scacre. Have your borwell dowsed, looking at the water you can plan further steps.

Calculation for tractor loads
Check your local tractor capacity. in my area it is 142cft. I keep 150 for calculation.
1acre=43560sft, 2ft of topping up.  i.e. 87120cft is needed.  87120cft/150cft(tractor capacity)=You will need at least ~520 tractor loads.  150/- load. 88K/acre

You can try in 10gunta which will cost you 25K and another 5K for spreading(JCB)

another pointer, if you dont top up. you will have to spend money for combing small boulders.

See below link, who has done similar land to a green forest

This is also in TN may be you can visit them to learn from their experience.

There are not even weeds, do you think green manure will help?

I agree. If the yellow patches are not just due to the photo, this just seems a bed of some mineral deposits?
If it is, the weathering of the minerals will be a continuous supply of the salts regardless of how many tractor loads you bring in.  :frowning:

Respected Members,
                              First of all my huge thanks to the FARMNEST to make this much informative and very usefull site for the farming
          community. I had not expected this speed feedbacks. thanks for the members again.

                              And regarding my land case i want to inform you all water availability is now very good. I ll do water and soil tests        immediatly and send you all at earliest , for your valuab;e feedbacks. when i bought this land
          ground water level is very low. The first work i had done, was to  stock most of the rain water, by making lot of small ponds and    also  one big pond of nearby half acre with 7ft height on the rain water flow way itself.All rain water from the hills have to go on the way of my land only. On this febrary end now my bore water level
          is just about8-10ft from ground level. It really helped me.

                            And i have a doubt sir{Mr.GK}, as there was no weeds how throwing seeds will be helpfull? Whether the seeds will germinate? pls suggest. {To Mr.SRI} My paddy fields are mixture of mostly red soil and sandy type. This area is only like this. Other total surrounding was mostly red soil type. {i cant able to open Saranghills web site-any other link to get this sir?}

                            Also members pls suggest regarding this. My local friend suggested like this… you dont care of the soil. You just land fill with good redsoil, manures,and neem cake ++organic matters for about333ft where you going to plant the trees and make trenches for rain water savings.Then things ll come good, he suggested. Balance area you dont bother. I feel something missing in this suggestion. i cant able to find. Pls guide…


Respected Members,
                                  Also pls suggest may i use the clay soil settled inmy half acre pond for about half to one feet for topup the soil or this clay soil also to be tested? as this pond is next to this land.


This also a good idea, but works only for horticulture.

Below is contact information of Sarang, I was under impression it TN. But it is Kerala.
Sarang (Main campus)
Agali-Chittoor P O, Palakkad, Kerala PIN : 678581
Phone : +91 4924 209038  |  Mobile : +91 9447114482
E-mail :

Reaching us :
Goolikkadavu is the nearby small town. The hilltop is about 7 kilometers away from Goolikkadavu.  From there you can either take a jeep (INR 350) directly to Sarang or get into a shared jeep or bus going to Chittoor Dam, get down at Sarangu padi (Sarang stop) (15-20 minutes) and climb the hill.

Dear Mr. Sri ,
          Pls guide whether the trees ll be affected when the roots
Will get below 3ft depth when doing horticulture crops , because
Of the soil condition. Or 333 itself enough?

Since you are going to follow Zero budget method, earthworms, micro-organisms  will take care of rest of the field. only it may take time.

If you follow checmical farming there is no soultion for this and what you are fearing for now, will happen.

Dear Anbu Sir,

Earlier, I had faced same problem and to the some extend managed. Now I am doing the  vegetable harvesting . If you want to know How? pls call me at 900 36 22 837, bcos i am not good in typing.

For removing this Problem you apply Gypsum to the Soil (It is Very Cheap) while Growing Jeelugu  (Caryota urens or  Sesbania aculeata) during this Summer and  cultivate these Plants in June along with Water. Like this you have to do this Procedure for 5-10 Years. In addition to this apply 10 Tons per acre Coir peat for effective Change of the Soil Structure.

for Vasudha Green Farms,