Meet Pretty Priyu from Telangana State, India

“When you like a flower​, ​you ​just pluck it. But ​when you love a flower​, ​you​ ​water it daily. I believe one who understands this, understands life.” I remember reading this quote in my school days and It planted a seed in my heart.

I belong to a middle class family. I had to stay away from my mom in my younger years, I missed my mother’s love and my life without mother was like a lake without water. Growing up, I faced many challenges and lived a stressful life. I needed unconditional love and realized that plants and the nature were the perfect companions for a person like me. I became passionate about plants and trees and subsequently gardening became a part of my life and living.

I had the habit of touching and feeling the fragrance of flowers. My school was more like a building in a nursery . We used to have gardening classes on weekends and I actively participated in those classes. We had also planted a neem tree sapling in the school garden that has now turned into a very big tree.

I used to visit my grandparent’s house during summer vacations every year. My grandparents used to grow all kinds of vegetables in their farm. They had paddy fields and cows, too.

After completion of my graduation, I started working an 8 to 6 job for a company in Hyderabad. It was a very ordinary routine and I wanted to do something more. I started thinking about my areas of interests and realized that nature was one of them.

In 2018, I started growing vegetables and leafy greens on the terrace and my main task was to carry the soil to the terrace. It was hard for me to drag the soil in bucket from ground to terrace but with family’s help I was able to do that.

I initially started with 200 pots with 100 pots for flowers and remaining 100 for vegetables and now I have expanded to 650 pots of 9 inches which are all arranged in a systematic way. I grow a wide variety of veggies in soil mixed with homemade compost, coco peat, cow dung and vermi compost. I do succession planting every 15 days for continuous yield.

It is a wonderful feeling every morning watching the sunrise, experiencing the fresh breezy air and smell of wet earth while watering the garden. We also get a lot of birds in our garden and the sound of birds chirping in the morning makes me very happy.

I’m planning to take up farming in few acres in the near future. With organic farming I will be helping myself, helping the community by creating employment and providing access to organic food and also taking care of Mother Earth.”