Farmer looking for new/ inexpensive practices


I am a farmer with a cardamom plantation in idukki district kerala, and coconut plantation in theni district, tamil nadu. I am looking for ways and means to improve effectiveness of existing resources as i am not in a position to invest a lot of money at this juncture.

Presently I have started vermicomposting as a means to use some farm waste (coconut dried leaves) along with cowdung. I am following the pit method and am having excellent returns. I am looking for ways to enrich this vermicompost. I am also looking for ways to tie up with the local village in order to collect the organic waste from the village.

Am hoping to get some information on Organic Waste Converters.

Am looking into bee keeping as a method to increase pollination of cardamom.

Hoping to grow fish in the semi-natural exisitng ponds.

Also looking for intercropping with coconut ideas. The trees are mature and yielding.Thinking of going for cocoa. Need to know if cadburys is still providing support.

Have a lot more questions…Dont wanna overwhelm!

Those with shared interests may also email me. Not sure if its ok to give an email id here.

Dear Resp Radhini ,

Welcome to our Forum, if it is your first posting.
Up to my taste and nature, It is a fact that you are very lucky born in IDUKKI ,
a heaven for crops, specially for Crops like Cardamom.

Persons/farmers/experts like, Mr Joy Peter, Panikulangara, Idukki, DrSuresh Kumar D.S, Idukki, Mr Faisal Nizam Sandalkda, Boeikeri, Idukki, have brought a sparkling lime light , making  35 KGS of Cardamom yield per acre (as recommended by Ind Inst of Spice Research in 2000_2010 yrs ) to above a ton, yield per acre. Great .

As said above,Mr Joy Peter, Faisal Nizam Sandalkda are very smallest/marginal farmers in the beginning and they became very popular and well earning farmers, with their innovative works. Investment capacity of money will not play a vital role, specially in Agriculture field.

In making Vermi composting, using Cow dung and coconut leaves, a peculiar Bacteria/fungi micro organism is developed by either Coconut Board and/or by Ind Tobacco Development Research centre, Rajahmundry, AP state. Pl contact the concerned professors of KVK or Coir Board or IISR, near to your farm and get the technique for decaying the coconut leaves fast. I will also try for it and inform you. 

As regards to growing Sweet water fish, you will have very good market and prices in your area. Try to grow GIFT Tilapia, or Sea bass fishes and you will get good revenue and also easy to grow to market sizes.

Cocoa gives you an yield of 300 kgs to 500 KGS per acre, that too after 4 years, that too if you grow well, and there should be a nearby purchasing centre by cadburrys or others like nestle, Karnataka co in Karnataka etc.

Cadburrys are providing support for purchasing Cocoa from farmers, with the support of state governments, provided sufficient growing farmers available as a required bunch only.

The present prices per kilo in AP state is around rs 190/_ per kilo. Not much revenue generating crop ,but safe and reliable income crop and also it enriches your soil very well. 

Hope the best ,  g.p.Rao,      farmer