People who are engaged in agriculture are very much familiarised with the name Padma Shri Subhash Palekar. People, who do not know of him should be familiarised with his method of Subhash Palekar Natural Farming (SPNF), which was known earlier as Zero Budget Natural Farming (ZBNF). He is the father of SPNF or commonly known as ´Jeevamrut or Jeevamrutham’ which advocates the method of practising agriculture without chemicals or pesticides.
Uses & benefits of jeevamrutham
- Subhash Palekar Natural Farming method backs the use of natural resources such as cow manure as well as other natural products as pesticides and fertilisers for crops.
- This technique suggests that microorganisms in these natural resources are the most important factor that crops require.
- The use of chemical products is completely prohibited in this farming way.
- It says these chemicals kill microorganisms that play an important role in the making of jeevamrutham or jeevamrut.
- It believes chemical use kills the soil, and the use of jeevamrut cherishes the soil and preserves soil’s natural traits and its related organisms such as earthworms.
Who is Subhash Palekar?
Subhash Palekar is born in an agrarian family in 1949, at Vidarbha, Maharashtra. He possesses a bachelor’s degree from the Nagpur College of Agriculture in agriculture. After joining with his father’s agricultural work in 1972, he began to implement his ideas in the field. During this period, he wrote many articles on agriculture and experimented with many new farming methods. During this time, he was attracted to the Indian Vedas and Upanishads.
In the college days, he studied the forest ecosystem and understand that there is no need for humans to help to grow trees in the forest. Underlying on this fact he turned his attention to the natural growth of trees and plants and thus evolved the idea of jeevamrut. He began to research projects and wrote, did seminars and workshops for the farmers in the country.
Subhash Palekar’s books and achievements
To date, he wrote more than 20 books in Marathi, 4 books in English, and 3 books in Hindi. It says more than 30 million farmers in India are practising this method. In 2017, Subhash Palekar was appointed by the government of Andhra Pradesh as the advisor of the state on Zero Budget Farming. States such as Karnataka and Himachal Pradesh showed interest in his techniques.
For his works and researches, the country decorated him by giving him the fourth highest civilian award Padma Shri.
Jeevamrutham ingredients and preparation
- Take 2.5 kilograms of cow dung raw.
- 1 litre of cow’s urine.
- Half kilogram jaggery.
- A half kilogram of any pulse’s powder (flour).
- A handful of soil is clean from chemical pesticides or fertilisers.
- 50 litres of water to dilute the mix.
Mix all the items in a large container and cover it with a log or sack to prevent direct sunlight. Keep the mix under shade for two days and mix well the mixture two times a day. After two days the mix can apply under any trees or plants.
How to use jeevamrutham for plants?
The mix can be used for any plants. Make sure to further dilute the mix depends upon the size of the plant. If it’s a new seedling dilute a litre of jeevamrutham into 10 litres of clean water. If it is a grown plant such as long beans or vellari (cucumber) dilute the mix into 5 litres of clean water and apply.
The mix can be used for 7 days and after 7 days the microorganisms will begin to decay. Twice in a month, one can use the mix. Do not apply the mix on dry soil as it will immediately kill the microorganisms in the mix. Water the soil before applying the mix.