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Re: [fukuoka_farming] Grass/Weed 'roller'

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  • Harish Amur
    No, the roller is not all that heavy. Small stones were no issues. Large stones would be a bit of a problem, but we did manage the unevenness of the land
    Message 1 of 3 , Nov 13, 2011
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      No, the roller is not 'all' that heavy. Small stones were no issues. Large
      stones would be a bit of a problem, but we did manage the unevenness of the
      land quite easily. As I said in my earlier email, it is better used by two
      people.

      Today, we tried rolling over grass in the morning (say 9 am) and the
      morning dew did pose some issues. We also tried on a shorter variety of
      grass. I don't know if it is because of the dew or the type of grass that
      the effect was not as good. I somehow felt that the grass would stand back
      upright again after sometime. Need to wait till a day or two to see what
      happens.

      About the thing on 'observing wild grass' - you misunderstood me. I have
      always been curious to study wild grass and see if we can apply our
      learnings to growing 'other grass' such as paddy etc. There is a huge
      debate in the region on whether to grow sugarcane in a very dense manner or
      to have enough room between plants and I am the only one on the other side
      of the debate i.e. enough room between plants :) After studying Sri.
      Palekar's books, I had been advocating at least 8' distance between rows.
      The farmers were not convinced and we settled at a distance of 5'. I should
      admit that the sugarcane has grown quite well. However the sugarcane in
      densely seeded plots in the vicinity are also doing well, I am told.

      Paddy and grass cannot grow together. It has to be one or the other.
      Weeding in paddy fields, in the initial years, is a must - I believe.

      Regards,
      Harish

      On Sun, Nov 13, 2011 at 8:33 AM, Boovarahan Srinivasan <offtown@...>wrote:

      > Thanks for sharing the photos.
      > Is the roller not heavy ?
      > How did it perform when small stones / pebbles were encountered?
      > Some kind of hand could have been much more helpful in using the roller.
      > I have a cut trunk of a coconut tree but it is too heavy to roll.
      > May be attaching a few iron angles and a handle would be much useful.
      >
      > You wrote of rice growing along with grass. The problem is , wild grass
      > grows much faster than rice making it a dwarf. This is the main reason why
      > farmers go in for ploughing ( to suppress weeds / grass ).
      >
      > Should my present rice crops fail , which is very likely, I intend to use a
      > crimper to mow down the grass and weeds and go on for direct scattering of
      > germinated rice seeds. I am waiting for the rainy season to be over.
      >
      > On Sun, Nov 13, 2011 at 12:44 AM, Harish Amur <harishamur@...>
      > wrote:
      >
      > > **
      > >
      > >
      > > We did a small experiment. We have a lot of grass (some very tall kind)
      > in
      > > the part of the land that we have set aside for growing large trees. We
      > had
      > > to someone manage this grass. I had seen Rajuji's crimp roller
      > equivalent(a
      > > rod and a rope). However I knew that we couldn't manage 2 acres of land
      > > with that technique. We needed a heavy duty stuff.
      > >
      > > Last year we dug a well. Cement rings were used to build the well. We
      > > thought of using these rings. However one ring would be too small (about
      > a
      > > foot). So we custom ordered a roller that consists of 2 rings. It was
      > made
      > > and delivered about a week ago and I did not get time. However today, we
      > > experimented with the roller and I am quite thrilled with the outcome.
      > >
      > > Some pictures added to the existing album:
      > >
      > >
      > https://picasaweb.google.com/102576450887783733401/FarmExperiments?authkey=Gv1sRgCK64pp7_po7_WQ
      > >
      > > A few months ago, we had cut a lot of similar grass with the Honda
      > cutter.
      > > I must admit that the roller did a much better job. Also, when you cut,
      > the
      > > tree or plant stubs(?) remain on the ground and pose a threat to all
      > those
      > > who walk near or on them. They are pretty sharp. However with the roller,
      > > no such issues. The pressed grass is as good as a mattress.
      > >
      > > The area covered by two of us today is about 1/8th acre. We took just
      > about
      > > an hour to do it. However we spent sometime trying to figure out the best
      > > way to tackle the piece of land. Also we were trying to do it solo to
      > begin
      > > with, but soon realised that doing it together provided better torque to
      > > handle those tough plants.
      > >
      > > In fact, I should also mention here that I am kind of getting many
      > answers
      > > to a very 'infamous' question that I had posted here a few months ago. I
      > > had asked 'where can we find paddy grow wildly'. Many of you had not
      > liked
      > > the question, holding me in a bad trust and likened me to be a cynical
      > > member. Well, I am finding some answers now. Grass grows quite well in
      > our
      > > farm and paddy is a kind of grass! There are several varieties of grass.
      > > However one thing that I have noticed is that they like to grow together.
      > > They have no issue being thickly populated. In fact, due to an error is
      > > sowing the paddy seeds, the paddy in our farm is quite dense and I see
      > that
      > > it has grown well. Fukuoka san also writes about the paddy density in
      > OSR.
      > >
      > > Regards,
      > > Harish
      > >
      > > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      > >
      > >
      > >
      >
      >
      >
      > --
      > Boovarahan S
      > Chennai.
      > 09962662717 (Vodafone) , 08825889492 (Videocon)
      >
      >
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      >
      >
      >
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