In April 2016, at the height of his profession inside the Silicon Valley, San Francisco-based totally Vivek Shah decided to quit his task and return to India and his spouse Brinda who holds a Masters in Printmaking.
“Living in San Francisco made us loads greater aware of our environment. Being full-time specialists ourselves, we started out realizing how our way of life turned into fluctuating in the direction of turning into bad due to our schedules,” says Vivek.
The couple’s first step to take fee in their fitness was to begin studying to cook dinner collectively.
“And but, one among our biggest struggles was, we didn’t know where in the food we were eating every single day become coming from,” shares Vivek.
The location the couple resided in become complete of tall fruit-bearing trees. It reminded Vivek of his youth while lifestyles became less difficult. Climbing bushes barefoot, scraping your knees and arms, and the joy of plucking fruit off after devouring them.
He desired to make that joy a part of his existence once more, and developing their personal meals became how they thought they might take pleasure in it again. The couple set out on an adventure to study permaculture ideas in a kingdom now not far from California. It turned into this journey that bolstered their remedy to go back to India and set up their farm.
“When we have been traveling for the path, we came throughout a strawberry discipline. Just as we were playing the view, we noticed someone wearing a white shielding jumpsuit spraying some liquid on to the plants. It sent a sit back down our spines. Imagine if the employees had to put on a protecting layer to save you the side-outcomes of their spraying chemicals; we had been ingesting the meals that become being grown like that. It now not simplest affected the consumers, the growers but additionally the environment at big. This becomes our turning factor.”
In 2016, the duo ended their jobs and back to their domestic kingdom, Gujarat.
Interestingly, there has been no competition. Their households were supportive in their preference and past elated that the couple had determined to come home.
“We had no historical past in agriculture. But the course we did helped us immensely in know-how the diverse strategies we may want to undertake to build a herbal and sustainable farm. We decided to kickstart our adventure by developing what we appreciated to devour first. Being Gujjus, it needed to be mangoes,” he laughs.
In 2017, an hour and a half pressure away from Ahmedabad, they bought a ten-acre land positioned on the outskirts of Nadiad, Central Gujarat, to create a farm which would not handiest satisfy the needs of their kitchen and cause them to be unbiased of the market but also take in industrial operations.
And that’s how Brindavan befell. From making sure soil fertility with green manuring strategies and managed grazing to harvesting rainwater thru pits and ditches, the duo practice strategies that help them utilize the farm assets to their maximum potential.
From pearl millet (bajra), wheat, potatoes, moringa, bananas, papaya, Jamun to wood, the couple grows crops that range from industrial to semi-business.
A blend of commercial and experimental farming, some of their other techniques, including plug nurseries, no-until vegetable farming, planting windbreaks, chook-loving plants, butterfly and bee loving flowers, is directed toward pest and soil control in some manner or the other.
They have dug trenches and pits on 10 in line with the general land to capture each drop of rainwater that falls on the ten-acre farm. This ensures that every properly monsoon cycle helps harvest 5 to 10 lakh liters of water.
The duo has additionally built a herbal home with soil, cow dung, and stone. The soil to construct the earth partitions of this home changed into additionally sourced from the farm itself when they dug a pond. One of the reasons to dig this pond was to tackle the problem of effluent water that a nearby contractor became letting into the sector.
“We were stunned due to the fact we were trying out high-quality to now not let any shape of chemical enter our farm. We determined to address this by way of amassing this water in a pond. We lined the pond with water-purifying sorts of plants that would take away the impurities before it made it to the pond, which captures 1.5 to two lakh liters of water.”
Aiming to turn this pond right into a flora and fauna pond, Brinda and Vivek are quickly going to introduce fish and geese in it. Vivek is also running on constructing a larger water-remedy plant that might, in the end, increase into a secondary enterprise.
Instead of using insecticides or concoctions to hold pests at bay, the couple uses fundamental natural pest control strategies at the farm, like developing aromatic plant life consisting of tulsi, lemongrass, and so forth, at the outer boundaries of the sector. This helps creates protective protection and hold fruit flies and pests at bay. Another technique to ensure that pest assaults do not motivate entire loss is intercropping or multi-cropping, which is developing two or more plants on an equal piece of land. To ensure that not an unmarried leaf on the farm is burned, all of the farm waste is processed to make compost.