I am a finance professional and although I enjoy gardening, also want to ensure its financially viable to an extent and not just a costly hobby..Hence I am quoting prices of things I currently buy.
I have around 300-400 Sq feet of open space on 1st floor with uninterrupted sunlight.
Today I bought 30 pots @ 20 bucks each. Normally I create a potting mixture as follows - (50% red soil (free), 25% sand(free) and 25% sheep manure (60 bucks a bag). Please let me know if this is a decent cost effective mixture or do I buy coco peat and such stuff which is hard to get and is also costly.
water is not an issue in my house and I can easily water every alternate day with as much water as needed.
My neighbour hood nursery sells manure @ 60 bucks a KG. I bought some Neem mixture @ 40 bucks a kg from a supermarket and also some packaged manure @ 30 bucks a kilo from the supermarket which I plan to use on my pots.
I also bought a kilo of urea from KR market @ 15 bucks a kilo which I plan to use on my pots.
Please let me know if all of the above that I mentioned makes sense or I should follow a more scientific method. I am hoping from 30 pots on first floor and some 200 sft on ground floor I should at least get two days worth of veggies every week.
My experience of past one year has been mixed - while beans, double beans and tomatoes has been productive - other vegetables like brinjal, palak, capsicum has been hit and miss with only 1-2 per plant
Where are you from? The pots seem to be cheap but the rest are very expensive. Rs 40 for 1 Kg for neem powder?
If possible try to replace sand with cocopeat. It will help in aeration. It should retail around Rs. 100 for a 5 KG compressed block. You can make it 4 to 5 times the size if you hydrate it. A 5 KG compressed block when hydrated should fill around 4 to 5 15 L buckets. At 25% it should be good for at least 15 buckets/pots.
Rs 60 for a KG of manure is very expensive. Generally they go around Rs 200 for a bag for 25 KG. You might consider using Vermicompost which should not cost more than Rs 6 /kg. The only drawback is the shelf life is only 1 month.
I will let the more experienced people comment on the correct ratio etc.
Hi Srikanth..used to live in Malkajgiri before but now in bangalore. Unlike hyderabad - every colony here has nurseries and they keep mounds of red sand, make pots, have plants and fertilizers..etc...you find them every 3-400 yards in bangalore....I dont even remember seeing them for 4-5kms from my home in Hyderabad except in faraway places like nagole.
Anyways these folks - mostly from UP and Rajasthan - fill up carts and send them around the nearby colonies - these folks quote 35 per pot.but I bought 30 of them so got them at 20 apiece - plus zero transportation as it home delivered.
The cost for neem powder is from a supermarket..unlike Hyd - I see very limited neem trees in hyd.
Compost - I dont know...sheep compost is what these nurseries claim and they cost 60 a bag but they done weigh much..5 kgs a bag i guess like coco peat. Not even sure if these sheep compost work
I will go to lalbagh this week and get compost.
Recently I have seen many articles and videos on youtube on urine being the best fertilizer. So have asked both my kids to urinate only in the garden... Hope this works.
Went to agricultural college last week.. but they were closed as half day on satday..let me try going again this week..pointis that I have to drive 20 kms to and fro - so thats 250 bucks of petrol for 250 bucks of manure
If you are planning to apply chemical fertilizers then the water retention capability is probably the most important. Other properties do not matter much.
If you want to grow organically though, the composition is important. Vermicompost is great addition to potting soil.
Sheep manure is excellent if you can get hold of it. Chicken manure is also good in small quantities. If you are not going to apply chemical fertilizers then you can innoculate the soil with bio-fertilizers and bio-protectors. You can refer to my post on this.
The neem cake powder also sells for the same rate in nursery I visit. It probably is not worth it.
In addition you can include sea weed power and fish emulsion based fertilizer to the mixture. Both are great organic additives and are quick releasing than manure. Add in small quantities.
My recommendation is to create your own composting / vermicomposting setup in your house. It is sustainable, prevents garbage overflow in your area (great service to your environment) and also a cheap way to get manure. You can refer to my post on vermicomposting if you need to get ideas.
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