While the city is home to a growing urban population that wants to grow its own vegetables, the impediment perhaps lies in many people not knowing where to begin. There may also be those who have their plants dying on them, and those whose plants are in dire need of some rejuvenation and the reviving touch of an expert gardener.
It is to address this need that the Chennai-based enterprising couple Lakshmi Sriram and S. Sriram have founded LS Home Gardens, an organic gardening agency that aims to solve urban farming woes. The couple grows different types of food at home, including vegetables like cabbage, radish, yam, chow chow, brinjal, okra, bitter guard, jalapeno, knol kol, bell peppers, and Andhra chillies, a variety of flowers, and even trees like lemon, drumstick and papaya in grow bags.
As a company, they offer advice on setting up organic vegetable and flower gardens, redoing existing patches, a bi-monthly maintenance programme for adding manure, pest checks, and even large-scale organic farming outside the city.
The company also offers coco peat-based lightweight soil mix, spill-proof and rodent-proof lightweight grow bags for growing plants and trees on terraces, organic pesticides, manure and growth boosters, and saplings of several types of vegetables and flowers. “Starting a vegetable garden at home is an easy way to save money, especially in these times of soaring vegetable prices. A tomato plant can easily provide 20 kilos of fruit over one season,” says Lakshmi. “Space is not a constraint, as you can grow a lot with just a few bags or containers. Terrace, balcony, handrails, fences, windowsill, backyard, front yard - any place will do.”
These two green thumbs have helped numerous people grow vegetables at home. Sriram offers a word of advice though, “Growing vegetables at home is quite easy. It is important though to remember that while one may employ people to water plants or rake the soil, gardening requires one’s personal attention. The results can be extremely gratifying.”
For more details, contact www.lshomegardens.com.