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Message from Krishna

Dear Friends,
This week after the ragi harvest we developed one of the few remaining conventional fields into beds and trenches, This is really the fundaments of our perennial and more permanent style of agriculture, We dug trenches of about 20 cms deep and beds of 60 cms wide. The trenches were filled with a diversity of organic matter; dry tapioca sticks, Gliricidia branches, Banana Stems, Papaya Stems & all the straw from the ragi harvest. People often ask what are the trenches for? The trenches are a vessel to return organic matter & create healthy soil. While writing the Mid-day Meal project of which you can click on the link below, it became apparent that we need to write a specific guide for local farmers, on how to implement our particular vision of natural farming, that focuses on honoring bio-diversity & nutrition. So we've started writing a manual & there are so many things to include! I've been very hesitant to use the word Permaculture because words like this take us into a realm of concepts that mean different things to different people. I'm trying to communicate that Permaculture is really about trying to rediscover a culture that is born from a relationship with the land. A culture that honors Mother Nature and celebrates our existence. Returning organic matter back to the fields is the first step on this road back to nature. This is how we start to heal the soil & thus ourselves.
   Mid-day Meal | Local Food Presentation 

“I do not particularly like the word 'work.' Human beings are the only animals who have to work, and I think that is the most ridiculous thing in the world”
― Masanobu Fukuoka

Community Supported Agriculture | Fruit & Vegetable Basket

This is the harvest for our amazing salad kit, Pumpkin flowers, Pumpkin Tendrils, Tender Drumstick, Rosella & Wing Bean leaves, Wing Bean flowers, Corn Silk & Radish leaves. Most of these ingredients, you're not going to find in a shop but they have the most exquisite tastes & very high nutritional medicinal values. By eating these foods you honor & rediscover your relationship with Mother Nature.

There are always loads of yummy produce in the basket. Sometimes participants are more familiar with some produce than others. When there are no ladies fingers or corn, eggplants or pumpkin, it just pushes participants to learn how to cook & value green papaya, turkey berry or banana stem. The vegetables presented to us in the shops are the result of industrialized agriculture & we have been conned into believing only such things as potatoes, carrots, beetroots & broccoli are good vegetables. This basket allows people to reclaim their cultural nutritional identity simply by eating the diversity of local foods offered to us by Mother Nature.

Baskets are available for pick up from the farm on Monday and Friday and there is a Pondicherry pickup Wednesday afternoon.
Please email for sign up. 

Localicious Thalis - Solitude Farm Cafe

Honor your relationship with Mother Nature by eating local foods.

Solitude Farm Cafe - Open | Mon-Sat | 9AM - 3PM

Recipe of the Week

How to Make Vegan Ice Cream with Shankupushpam (Clitoria ternatea)

Field Notes 
Ragi Threshing

This week we're hosting a group doing a one year course called "An apprenticeship in Ecological Nuturence". For the last 2 months they've been at Marudam Farm School in Thiruvannamalai & after Solitude they'll be going to the Gurukula Botanical Sanctuary in Wayanad. On their first day they started Threshing the Ragi. This job seems repetitive & mundane but there are so many small techniques, details & experience that the ladies from the local villages have, which really are integral to their culture. It's equally important that this ragi is cleaned, pounded and milled by hand using the traditional tools. Efficiency, using electric mills for large scale processing, has its place but ultimately it leads to the erosion of traditions. This was the first time anyone in this group had threshed ragi & yet this crop is responsible for the depth & richness of our Indian Culture. This ragi will be used to make ragi balls, porridge, adai & dosas in our cafe. Grown locally and consumed locally. Reclaiming a Cultural Identity!

Music from Solitude

Music art & culture are an adhesive that binds our society together. "Can you record me" is the title track o from Krishna's band's third album.

Secrets of our Salad workshop

This is our weekly workshop on exploring local foods.

What is happening on the farm ?

Regular Workshops 

Every Saturday 11:30 A.M - Weekly tour and introduction to the Solitude Farm

Every Friday 9:30 AM | Natural Soap Making Workshop 
It is imperative that we stop polluting our water sources with chemical soaps. By making our own soap with natural local resources, we can recycle all our waste water to grow food. The Process is simple, easy and fun. 
Sign Up Here

Every Wednesday  9:30 AM | Secrets Of Our Salad: An Introduction to Permaculture 
Secrets of our Salads is an exploration of the values of local food which is at the very heart of permaculture.
Sign Up Here 

Every Tuesday 9:30 AM | Cooking With Local Food
The wealth of local foods, their nutritional and ayurvedic values reflects the greatness of this culture. Many of these foods have been eclipsed by the industrialised agriculture and this workshop aims teaching people how to revalue them in traditional and fusion cooking styles.
Sign Up Here

3 Day Intensive Permaculture Workshop 

This workshop is to empower you to explore your relationship with mother nature and take the first steps on your road back to nature. 
The modules in this workshop will empower you to grow your own food; urban gardening, circle garden with enormous social implications & a larger field module for those starting their own farms. We will explore soil, seeds, local foods, medicinal plants, recycling water, enzyme & hand soaps and the importance of celebration in permaculture.
Dates for upcoming Permaculture workshop: 13th to 15th December 2019 | 27th to 29th Dec 19
Sign Up Here

Please email us at to sign up. 
Contribution required  for all the workshops, except the weekly farm tour. 

We are also looking for volunteers to work on our upcoming festival "LUYE - Lively Up Your Earth 2020" Please email us for more details. 

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Krishna McKenzie · Solitude Farm · Auroville 605101 · India

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