Kochi: This monsoon when the new academic year has started, 30 students of the Agri Crop Health Management course of the Government Vocational Higher Secondary School (Boys), Kunnamkulam, Thrissur, are turning their campus into a hub of organic farming by sowing various vegetable seeds and planting seedlings.
The students prepared over five cents of land at the school gate under the direction of teachers for the purpose. The seedlings also were prepared by the students. There are other areas on the campus which are also used for cultivation. Teachers give training in classrooms in this regard apart from giving on-field directions. Though it is a boys school, girls are allowed in the higher secondary section.
Apart from a wide variety of vegetables, tapioca and Chinese potatoes are also being cultivated here. Organic manures are supplied free of cost by the Kunnamkulam Municip-ality which has shown keenness to help such ventures in schools.
Under a project called ‘Samatha’, the women members of the Kudum-basree unit under the municipality convert sol-id waste into organic manures, helping in the organic vegetable cultivation.
Students are trained to make organic pesticides and they protect the plants with these organic pesticides. Tobacco decoction, garlic, neem oil and emulsion are among the things used as organic pesticides. Students have also launched mushroom cultivation as part of the organic drive this year. Interestingly these activities have been included in the vocational theory and practical periods in the time table of the students.
“Students are also planning paddy cultivation in the one and a half acre paddyfield of the school if time permits. So far the funds for the cultivation have been made available by the school and Krishi Bhavan which we propose also for paddy cultivation,” said Dhanya Joseph, principal-in-charge, GVHSS, Kunnamkulam.