Interview of Mam Salma Kamal, Home Kitchen Gardening Expert

The awareness of Home kitchen Gardening is very necessary. Mam Salma Kamal is struggling so much to spread awareness of Home Kitchen Gardening in Pakistan. This interview will help you so much about the basic information of Kitchen Gardening. After having the knowledge of Home Kitchen Gardening we can grow our fresh vegetables and fruits & as an interest you can also save you money. I hope after reading this interview you can solve your problem of Home Kitchen Gardening & will able to grow fresh vegetables and fruit at your home.

Q: Please tell me some thing about you & what is your qualification? How you have an idea to create a NGO of Kitchen Gardening?

Ans: I am a graduate in science. When I was in MSc part 2 biological Salma Kamal sciences at Quid-Azam –University I had to leave half finished due to marriage .I was born with green thumb and among brothers and sister I was the only one who took keen interest in plants. I inherited, passion for home kitchen gardening from my mother. I am a very keen home kitchen gardener myself
after marriage I had to move abroad first to England and then Middle East. During my stay in London, after finishing house hold chores I used to take walk around the neighborhood .I soon become aware that British people were avid gardener. After exchanging pleasantry they usually talk about their gardens and gardening experience. The land lady where we were staying had a very well kept small garden. I used to see here working for hours in her garden. Gradually my interest began to developed; I also started to buy seeds and grew plants in what ever space I had.
I always wanted to live close to nature instead of house or an apartment. When we returned to Pakistan and were looking for house we decided to buy a farm instead of lucrative land offers in residential areas.
Living in rural Islamabad with National Agriculture Council close by I got a chance to complete many courses offered at this center, such as home kitchen gardening, off season vegetable farming in tunnels, mushroom farming, etc which greatly enhanced my knowledge.
Later on I became member of international kitchen gardener’s organization. I had gained knowledge of kitchen gardening I frequently write blogs for this site.
During 1010 devastating floods in Pakistan due to my active participation in forum and blog writing. Roger Dorian the owner of this organization personally wrote me and asked how international members could help the flood victim. Since they had no office in Pakistan they sent me seeds to be distributed all over Pakistan which I did very success fully, As I went to my distribution mission I had a chance to interact with poor people I realized that these poor people need just a little support and guidance and they can grow vegetables at home and reduce cost of living drastically. It was then I decided to form NGO to promote kitchen gardening after the pathetic situation of flood 0f 1010 I made up my mind that there is urgent need to initiate KG also in urban areas and slums. Now THE mission of my NGO is to promote and set up kitchen garden in every home. You will be surprised to know that what every I have done to promote KG promotion I have utilized my own funds and some friends like Asmaid Adress of efficient seeds company and friends mostly foreigners have helped me by sending seeds.
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Q: What is the mission of your NGO? How many members do you have in your team? Who provide you fund for this Kind work?

Ans: There is great need now to restart an awareness program of home kitchen gardening. Encouraging everyone to acquire self-sufficiency in food by growing their own vegetables in their backyards. There is need of training programs that should be conducted in every School, Colleges and universities. As result children would start taking interest in kitchen gardening at very early stage, and this interest would surely continue through out their life in one form or other. Home kitchen gardening should be initiated on urgent bases by big world organization like world food program especially in under developed countries. A plan should be worked out to get not only women but men and children to grow vegetables at home, schools colleges universities and where ever possible.Interview of Mam Salma Kamal Food is so costly now that ideas of home kitchen gardening in all form, stands a better chance of success, now, than ever before. This project is run by me and my husband. Seeds are sponsored by some seed company and friends living abroad. The expenditure on events has so far been from my own pocket. I want to carry this project to national level but lack of funds is the only hindrance. Here I would like to appeal to all well off Pakistani and resourceful persons both living in Pakistan and abroad to come forward and help me to take this project to next level. Your kind gesture will help poor house hold to live a sustainable living by becoming self sufficient in at least on aspect of life and that is food.

Q: How much time do you have to devote for Kitchen Gardening? How successful you are to achieve your goals & how many people took benefit from your services?

Ans: I love planning events, and that’s not time consuming. My promotion tools are facebook, blog writing and active participation on international kitchen gardening organization sites. .Web presence in one form or another has greatly helped me in getting free seeds and this necessity take up take up most of my time .I have to give at least give 6 hours each day to internet. My kitchen garden project group on face book is evidence of my success. I have covered most of urban and rural Islamabad sectors and now my focus is slums of Islamabad. With limited resources it’s impossible for me to go to every nook and corner of Pakistan but thanks to face book and internet this is now virtually possible

Q: What kind sources you use to deliver your message to the people e.g. Workshops, Brochure & Internet etc? How the residents of other cities of Pakistan can take benefit from your services except Islamabad?

Ans: To promote kitchen gardening I have to use many ways. I do this trough face book, through, organizing seed distribution and lesson at my home or any locality and through my kitchen gardening club and least but not least aggressive promotion through words of mo.uth and by growing vegetables and sharing with friends and neighbors

Q: To overcome the crisis of Food in Pakistan your project of Kitchen Gardening could be very helpful, if students or common people wants to join your NGO then what is the procedure? Except Islamabad the other residents of Pakistan can join you?

Ans: Kitchen gardening is not my NGO it’s every one NGO. Any one can Start this project in his area. The only criterion is that He or she should be a kitchen gardener and could organize an event in his area and give a basic lesson. I plan to involve young enthusiast Kitchen Gardener in every nook and corner of Pakistan for promotion of kitchen gardening. For that I need lot of funds which I am lacking now but I have full faith in God that he would help me Insha’Allah.

Q: Those who wants to grow fruit, flowers and vegetables plant at home, please guide them in which month the plant should be planted?

Ans: God has blessed Pakistan with all four season summer , springInterview of Mam Salma Kamal , autumn and winter so all vegetables can be grown in Pakistan .The winter vegetables are usually planted in month of august- October, November before frost sets or in feb-to march and harvested in march, April till May. The summer crop is planted in October November before frost or march, April, may and harvested in may June, July, August & September till October. Summer vegetables are Bitter gourd (karela), Ladyfinger (bhindi), Mint (pudina), Mushrooms (khumbi), Egg plant (brinjal) Pumpkin (kaddu Bottle gourd (lauki), ridge gourd (tori) and green gourd (tinda) Green beans (French beans, flat beans etc),shimla mirch bell pepper ,chillies, tomatoes.
Winter crops are potatoes, peas, radish ,carrot, cauliflower, cabbage, salad, dania, onion, garlic, salad, spinach.

Q: If someone wants to buy good seeds from market so how he can differentiate between good or bad seed, Which are the companies that offer affordable price with good selling of seeds in Pakistan?

Ans: We cannot differentiate good or bad seed by looking at it, but through my experience I would advice not to buy seeds which are black from inside and insects infested. To prevent disappointed it’s advisable to buy seeds from good seed shops in your town. Never buy seeds from foot path vendor as they are selling expired and low grade seeds.

Q: Which vegetable plants can be grown in home & which fruit and vegetable we should not grow at home?

Ans: ALL VEGETABLES CAN BE GROWN IN Pots. People also grow banana in pots on roof tops. The bigger pot would be required for example you need a big pot to grow water melons gourds and a medium size pot to grow tomatoes chilies, okra egg plant. What you can grow all depends upon space you have and amount of sun light and water availability. You can grow vines against walls, balcony and trellis to save space.

Q: Do the plants which are grown at home need spare and fertilizer? Which are those plants that are good crop without fertilizer and spare?

Ans: Compost or khad is food of plant and without compost you cannot expect plant to grow well.

Q: Which kind of spare needed to the plants that are grown at home? Which spare makes the vegetable poisonous?

Ans: Its absolute unnecessary to spray chemical on vegetable, grown at home as it is is extremely harmful to your health and environment. The vegetables grown in homes is in such a small scale that pest it could be easily controlled by home made organic spray which could be a very easily be made at very low cost.

Q: Which kind of common mistakes people make during planting vegetables at home & they have to face problems and they don’t get the expected result?

Ans: Those who are starting out often have to process through a trial and error system. You became a good kitchen gardener only through experience. Many of the most common mistakes made in growing vegetables can be corrected simply by knowing them beforehand and taking the advice.
Growing vegetables is not that difficult overall.
Picasso did not paint a masterpiece at his first time at the canvas, did he?
f you are new to vegetable gardening its easy to become frustrated when something goes wrong, especially if you aren’t sure what or how it went wrong.
Many times it all comes down to something that could have been prevented with a little planing. Here are some common mistakes that are typically made in the vegetable garden and how you can avoid them.
Starting Out Too Big
Not Properly Preparing the Garden Soil
Planting In Shady Areas
Over Fertilizing
Over Watering

Journalist, Android Application Developer and Web Designer. Writes article about IT in Roznama Dunya. I Interview Prominent Personalities & Icons around the globe.

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