Reaping Bountifully

Kharibari Village, India


Attempting something for the first time in a group, this quarter was very exciting for the villagers as they planted kitchen gardens. This was the first initiative by the committee to work in a group, but in their respective land. We had given them some seeds for mustard and cabbage as an encouragement towards kitchen gardening. It was decided that cabbage seed would be planted in one place, and then saplings would be distributed among the villagers once they grew, whereas mustard seeds were sown in their small lands. They were growing well until the untimely rain in October destroyed everything.


All the enthusiasm was gone for a while, but we decided to recultivate the vegetables. So we planted the vegetables again, and they grew well this time. The cabbage could not be planted, but mustard grew well. Villagers were very happy to see the fruit of the collective effort, when they exchanged ideas about vegetable farming. Some families grow for their own use, and some sell a few vegetables, such as mustard leaf and tomatoes, to other families.


Mr. Bhandhan had stopped his paddy cultivation due to the elephant menace. We encouraged him to cultivate this year, too, and he did. Though elephants destroyed some crops this year, he reaped bountifully.