“When on one hand prices of different vegetables in the market remain sky rocketing and on the other hand use of insecticides and pesticides keep harming our health, it is better to welcome the culture of kitchen gardens as it can benefit us in various ways”, said director and additional director of research, Dr SS Gosal and Dr JS Dhiman respectively from Punjab Agricultural University (PAU).
Both feel that rarely families whether residing in rural or urban pockets, run kitchen gardens despite the fact that these gardens play a key role in maintaining good health. “Families that have a kitchen garden and have maintained it on a passionate note can understand its importance. These gardens can produce vegetables throughout the year and can be grown naturally without any use of insecticides and pesticides which is a core feature of vegetables available in the market”, added Gosal.
Dr Daljit Singh Khurana, a professor from the department of Vegetable Crops, said even families residing in cities and towns should not worry about having a kitchen garden even if there is paucity of space. “Since last two years, PAU has been recommending a garden model of 6 X 6 meter in the urban areas where space is an issue. According to our surveys and experiments that we carried in PAU, this model is sufficient to provide vegetables of about 300 kilos in a year to a five member family. We are already associated with many families across the state who have maintained gardens going by this model,” added Khurana who feels that family along with children should try maintaining the garden with their own hands rather than deploying gardeners.
Speaking to a family who was inspired by the PAU kitchen garden model, they said that nothing was better than home grown vegetables as they were not only hygienically grown but also highly nutritious as compared to market vegetables .
“I am into kitchen gardening for the past three years. I maintain it on my own and if I have any concerns, PAU experts have always offered me the best advice for the vegetables grown or any other plants that I wish to grow. I do not have much space at home so I have grown most of the vegetables in different kind of containers including regular pots, open plastic containers to name a few on my roof top,” said YP Kapoor, a retired educationist.
Various other experts in the department of vegetable crops underlined that markets in vegetables are not sold on a hygienic note and hence those grown in kitchen gardens were a healthier option as they were organic nature.