An Indian expat living in Dubai has not shopped for vegetables and a lot of other day-to-day kitchen requirements, ever since December. Wondering how he’s managing? Well, Praveen Kottavathil maintains his own, sweet kitchen garden and poultry at his villa in Al Quoz. The lockdown has affected our grocery shopping in many ways, but for this man, things have been very different.
Praveen has not felt the need to step out to the supermarket during the lockdown, thanks to his very own vegetable garden. The 3,000 sq ft plot grows ivy gourd, tomatoes, cabbage, cauliflower, mint, curry and coriander leaves, spinach, beans, chillies, watermelons, tapioca and sugarcane. “Everything is grown pesticide free, “ said Kottavathil from the Indian state of Kerala.
How He Manages The Garden
Praveen grows his herbs in a very innovative way. He uses aluminum pipes picked from construction sites for this purpose. Everything in the garden is sustainable. In fact, the water from the fish tanks is used to irrigate the green landscape his kitchen garden offers.
“Algae water is good for plants. I have fitted pipes running from the tank to the garden area. The fish tanks are recycled with fresh water every two days,” he said.
Apart from this, the garden is taking care of by the entire family. Praveen’s wife is an ophthalmologist by profession, but she also helps quite a bit in keeping the garden alive. His children Ayanviraj, 8 and Mithuna, 4, also pitch in. Every morning, the family spends time outdoors, playing with rabbits, and digging their hands into the soil. Praveen is happy that he is able to provide his kids a health, eco-friendly lifestyle, just like the one his father gave him.
In many ways, this whole sustainable farming I am doing now has come as a full circle for me at a personal level,” he adds.