Productive utilization of lockdown Woman earns Rs 85000 by growing jasmine

Gardening can bring immense peace to one, doctors even prescribe to spend some time with the environment in order to stay healthy. Some people love to create a small organic farm in their backyard or balcony and some like the fragrance and view of different flowers.

The current lockdown however, has unlocked the creative side of many people across the world. Having a hobby that can help one earn some extra dimes on the other hand has become even more beneficial considering the recession that came along with the pandemic.

An advocate based in Mangalore, Kirana Devadiga (36), proved the above statement by growing Jasmine that changed her life.

During the lockdown in March, 2020, Kiran started growing Udupi Jasmine, which is also known as Shankarpura Mallige. Although, jasmine is grown in different parts of the country and is recognized by different names, the Udupi Mallige has an unparalleled fragrance, and holds the distinction of having a Geographical Indication (GI) tag.

“I have always had a secret desire to own a piece of land and cultivate it. Being a city bred girl, that dream never materialised. However, the lockdown came as a boon because I started to spend more time thinking about my passion — agriculture and farming,” Kiran said to The Better India.

Sisters and husband laughed at her idea

She also mentioned that her sisters and husband laughed at her when she came up with the idea. “They asked me why I would want to spend my time growing flowers when people all around the world were struggling with COVID,” she says. Her family could not connect dots between a farmer and an advocate, not understanding that it is an individual’s desire. Therefore, she persisted and went about researching and finding out more about the plant.

Kiran did not wait to own a bigger space but grabbed what she had on hand. A terrace space avilable, she spent a lot of time online understanding how terrace gardening works.

From there she started nurturing a garden of jasmine. She said, “All you require is patience and a will to grow plants.” The owner of Sahyadri Nursery in Mangaluru, Rajesh, helped Kiran identify the plant she could grow.

When people questioned-how a lawyer could do farming? Guess it was Kiran’s advocate brain that helped her distinguish between which flowers to choose to grow as a profitable business.

Garnered information from online

Due to the lockdown not too many people were out buying plants, which turned out as a good luck for Kiran. She loaded her car with 90 jasmine plants which cost a total of Rs 3,150.

The second thing she needed was pots, in her favour she spotted a street vendor who was trying to sell off 100-odd pots so he could get back to his home in north India. She said, “I bought all the pots he had for Rs 65 each and loaded them up in the car. Because of the lockdown, it was next to impossible to get a tempo or even an auto rickshaw to help me ferry the pots home.”

Kiran said how conversations with the nursery honour helped her through the whole process as she was a novice when it came to gardening and had no idea about soil type, water quantity and manure quality to help the plants grow better.

Along with that all other information she gathered was either from watching YouTube videos or by having conversations with other terrace gardeners.

However, despite the sarcasm her husband Mahesh joined her in her gardening chores and spent the first three months meticulously taking care of the plants. “Mahesh is up way before I am, and is the one who usually tends to the plants in the morning. The jasmine buds should be picked before the first sun rays fall upon it,” she mentioned.

“While the plants started to bloom well after three months, I refrained from plucking the flowers, hoping for better yield,” she added to her statement.

The advocate did her research according to which they needed to wait at least six months before plucking the flowers, so she let the plants get bushy. “When I plucked the flowers for the first time, I saw amazing yield, close to 3 ‘chendu’,” she adds. As many as 800 flowers go into making one chendu.

Hard work always finds a way to shine

“For all the mocking that my sisters did when I started, they are the ones who help me string the flowers together today. In fact, they are so inspired by the manner in which my jasmine plants have fared that they too have started jasmine cultivation,” she says with a hearty laugh.

Including plants, pots and manure that Kiran invested in for around 12,000; she has earned close to Rs 85,000 from the sale of the jasmine flowers till date. Kiran is a stellar example of how hard work always finds a way to shine.

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