Monday, May 14, 2012

Growing Veggies in shadenet

The shade net structure that we constructed last year has turned out to be a nice, little laboratory where we try cultivating seasonal veggies. So far we have cultivated Okra successfully, Radish and Spinach is work in process. Recently, we harvested chilly and tomatoes.

Sprouting of chilly seedlings within a week of sowing. 

Flowering occurred at approx 60 days.

Green chillies were seen at about 90 days.

Chillies turned red in approx 115 days.

So far, we have harvested a couple of handfuls of red chillies (from a bed of 3 ft x 9 ft). After drying them, we are looking forward to grinding it - totally organic and unadulterated. Apart from irrigation initial manuring, no sprays were applied.

Tomato seeds sprouted in about 5 days
At 20 days. Flowering occurred at 47 days.

Fruiting occurred at 60 days

At 115 days. Although the tomatoes were bright red and had a nice smooth texture to it, I was disappointed by the size. 

Although hybrid seeds were used for both of them, I was expecting a bigger fruit set. Having said that, I am almost convinced that the yield in hybrid seeds is only realised under "optimal" conditions of irrigation, fertigation, soil quality and temperature. Next time around, I will try using variety (non hybrid) seeds to see if the hypothesis stands.


  1. Friend i like your blog very much because i am also a great lover of agri. Brother we have 50+ years old 170 trees of kesar mango at Junagadh dist(gujarat). I read your blog. our tress gives us everage 20 tons production yearly. so i am confused. we have to use UHDP(ultra high dencity plantation) in our farm and replace this old trees or not? Please guide me brother.

    1. Are you getting 20 tons or 2 tons? Assuming a 10x10m spacing, 20 tons is a good yield from a little over 4 acres. Typical yield is about 1 - 1.5 tons per acre in traditional spacing.
      Since the plants are 50+ years old, I am pretty sure the trees already have a massive canopy. Growing trees besides it (3m away) would probably be impossible. If you are getting an avg of 5 tons per acre, I would not convert them into UHD..

    2. Brother thanks for replay....
      Bro this year we will get 2.4 tons. But 20 tons (2000 box of 10 kg each)is everage. Our farm is 2.5 haqtor. In local language 16 Bigha (Vigha). Ya you are right. All the trees are more than 50 feet in hight. This year we apply Drip system to our farm and also used Humic acid, Apsa-80 and paclobutrazol (30% w/v powder from china). So I expect more production in next season. So we have to go for UHD or not in near future?

    3. If you are yielding 20 tons from 170 trees, I would not remove them. You can try out UHD in another barren plot of land.
      UHD is about planting 400+ trees in an acre and expected yield is 10 -15 kg per tree.

    4. Thanks for such a nice info brother. Friend is it possibal to take off-seasion mango production? I read in net, in thiland many farmer induce thair mango trees for flower right after harvesting main seasion crop? Do you have any idea about that? is it possibal in india with our mango tree?

  2. wrt tomato..Indo- American hybrid seeds have proved good in my garden.

    i have tried Ruchi,naveen etc they ARE good yieldersand size also was very good.
    one plant yields 5 to 7 kg.

    they have long list of discriminate and indiscriminate varities...

  3. Subhash Palekar says in his workshop that Hybrid seeds perform well only if you add the recommended dose of chemical fertilizers. Under natural farming they perform poorly compared to desi seeds.

  4. at least wrt hybrid tomato seeds . i fertilize them with compost/vermicompost/ground nut cake and they do well.