Our cottages are located in a beautiful, serene and pure environment. To maintain the environment in the same way, there are a few steps that we have taken and some activities that we do from time to time.
First and foremost is the tree plantation which we have been doing for the past many years. There are many bare areas where trees have been felled unscrupulously. Instead of simply talking about it, we decided to act on it. Now we procure trees for planting from forest nursery and sometimes even from various private nurseries. Wherever we see a bare patch of land, these trees are planted.
The survival of these newly planted trees depends on various factors. The best survival rate is seen when we plant them in the early rainy season closely followed by late autumn. Due to lack of water in the summers, small trees quite frequently fail to survive. Another problem is with the animals (including domestic cattle) that eat up these newly planted trees. From our experience, we have seen that the survival rate for trees from private nurseries (of around 5 feet height) is higher than the small trees from forest nurseries (that are around 1-2 feet high).
Trees that we prefer to plant are the ones that are indigenous to the region and can easily grow in the wild. Deodars, oaks, some wild flowering trees grow quite easily. We have also planted some hardly cultivars of apples too, in the hope that once established, people will not chop them down.
The cost for a tree from forest nursery is usually around 0.5 to 1 USD. The ones from private nurseries cost around 4 to 7 USD.
Support tree plantation in the region
The money you contribute here will be used to plant trees in the region. (Please do not use this payment method for sending us money for any other purpose)
Helping the Birds
Himalayan birds are quite different from the ones found in the other parts of India. Some of them are even endangered. In our orchards, we have ensured that some wild trees like oaks, deodars, acacias etc are also present. These are natural places for building nests, by these winged friends of ours.
During the fruits season, everyone around our orchards have been told to leave some fruits on each of the trees. These are left for the birds to feed on. Magpies love our pears and some tiny mountain birds are fond of apples when they are still sour.
Sustainable farming for us means environmentally sustainable. Organic farming is preferred where possible. We discourage use of insecticides and pesticides. We give birds a natural ecosystem to thrive. They in turn pick up small worms from the fruit trees and keep the fruits healthy. Crop rotation helps in keeping the soil nutrition rich. Even the organic waste from the orchard and cottages is composted and used.
We promote use of cover crops like dutch clovers and green peas. These look beautiful and help in improving the soil quality.
The villagers from the neighboring villages have also understood the importance of environmentally sustainable farming and now they too are moving towards it.