Paulo Bessa wrote:Hello Jess!
I have been to India in October 2011. I was nearly 2 weeks in Kerala, and then I moved nearly 2 weeks in Auroville.
Kerala is a tropical moist forest, with amazing biodiversity in the home gardens of the common families.
The natural forests range from the seaside coconuts (with understories of nutmegs, taros, cinnamon, peppercorns, etc) to midmountain forests of mostly cardamons (such a scent!), to more higher plantations of coffee, tea, silky oak trees, amongst eucalyptus forests that are mixed in many other tropical trees, so far unknown to me, I remember seeing lantanas and chritmas euphorbias in the understory, and some of these high diversity forests would entend up to 2100 meter high (in the mountains of the western ghats). The home gardens of families are a lot of these spicy species, medicinal herbs, perennials (mostly a high diversity trees that provides shade and mulching, climbing species and shrubs in the understory, some spots with more shade, some with more sun, some with more misture, others with less). Its real forest gardens, even if they are not intentionally designed as such. I was fascinated by these forests and gardens!
East of the western ghats (in Tamil Nadu state) the landscape is much drier, and you can find a vegetation, still very diverse, but more typical f a tropical savanna, with drought tolerant species. Auroville is on the coast of Tamil Nadu, where vegetation is a little bit more humid again. But basically they recver a semi-desert landscape back to the original dry tropical forest. That is quite impressive. They also have purposeful plantations of perennials and tropical trees and systems of swales in some of their subcommunities within auroville. Overall, aurville does more permaculture than several ecovillages I visited in Europe. And definitively way more self-sufficient than most communities.
Blaine, just a comment you don't take 8 hours between Kerala and Auroville. That is overly optimistic You take 2 days at minimum. Or more comfortably a 3 hour flight. Travelling in India is quite exausting and it is not the same as travelling in Europe or N America. But I did enjoy Auroville a lot!
Sharifah Nazriah wrote:Hi Jess, I am new to this website. I lost my Job last year and ever since I have been trying to do natural farming. I have a been a staunch environment lover all my life and though its not known here in Malaysia I have been creating my own compost as fertilizers in spite of the strange reactions from my neighbors . I live in a city but I had since purchased three pieces of land of varied geographical nature but after wasted money down the drain trying to make something out of it I have halt the whole projects a few months ago. I plan to live in Kerala for two months next April though June 2016. I have not a clue where I could find the permies out there but I learnt that Kerala have very similar climate as here. Its been a while that you posted your plan to go there I would appreciate if you could share your experience an tips on how to best spent my holiday there as a student of knowledge.