Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Farming Activities Under Drought Conditions

Unfortunately the 2012 monsoon rains missed most of our district.  Our well is dry, no irrigation waters have been released and many farmers in our area have been forced to watch as their crops slowly die from lack of water.  Local newspapers reported this week that farmers were requesting the Tamil Nadu Government officially declare Madurai district drought affected so farmers can seek compensation for lost crops.  We are in the fortunate position that by installing our drip irrigation and using our bore water plus our neighbour's water we've been able to keep our vegetable gardens, rice and fruit trees alive.  You can see from the photos below how dry the unplanted areas of our property are compared to the green parts where we are using our water sparingly.  Israel told me we are one of the few farms around that still has healthy green rice.  The dry conditions mean that growth of our crops is a little slow and harvesting of vegetables may be delayed.  I've also included a photo of the work the older boys have done on some new bird shelters so we can keep more ducks, chickens and turkeys.  Its great to see them putting into practice some of the skills they've been learning at technical college.

Bringal plants growing alongside the dripper lines

Our rice is still a vibrant green

The drought conditions meant we could only plant a couple of fields with rice

Brick foundations built by the older boys for the new bird shelters

Two new ducks swim on the duck pond that the boys built last year

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