Agriculture

Vegetable Dyes

Third most important group of dyes is the Vegetables dyes group. Although they can be obtained from almost any plant but most important were madder, woad, and indigo. Madder (Rubia tinctorum), A bright red dye, comes from a plant of the same name also known as “dyer’s root.” Though its origin is lost in antiquity, it was used to dye the wrappings on Egyptian mummies. It is said that Alexander the Great used madder to help him defeat the Persians in 350 B.C. He had many of his soldiers dye their cloaks with splotches of red and stagger onto the… Read More »Vegetable Dyes

A Glimpse of Punjab in Winter

The advent of winter in the North India brings in its wake many things. The biting cold requires us to fend off the winter with lots of warm clothes. But all are not so lucky. There are poor who let alone the warm clothing are not able to procure the sufficient food to survive. They face the hunger pangs perpetually. Many of them cannot withstand the bitter cold wave and perish. Then there is fog. Many a times it is so thick that there is no visibility beyond a few meters. This creates many problems for the transportation. So many… Read More »A Glimpse of Punjab in Winter

Cotton: The fiber that covers us

When Adam, the first man and Eve, the first woman, ate the forbidden fruit from the tree of wisdom, they become conscious about their nudity. They became so embarrassed that when the Father God came to see them, they were hiding behind the trees and God understood that they have violated the condition which was laid down for them to live in the Eden Garden without ever to do anything for their needs. When God commanded them to come out of hiding before Him, they wrapped their sensitive organs with leaves. They were expelled from the Heaven condemned to toil… Read More »Cotton: The fiber that covers us

Tobacco and Slavery

When America was in the process of colonization by European powers who began settling their people there, they required large numbers of labors to work on their farms. Most of the people who were enslaved and sold in America were Africans. The transatlantic slave trade involved many millions of people, and its history and legacy have had an impact all over the world. There were European slave traders, ships’captains and sailors as well as African traders and the African people captured and enslaved. They cultivated the land which were highly fertile and produced crops in vast quantities. Colonizers saw that… Read More »Tobacco and Slavery

Poplar cultivation

We traveled by Shatabadi Express from Delhi to Dehradun. First it was in winters and second only in June of this year. As soon as the train crosses the industries outside Delhi, the dead river called Yamuna, the green fields begin to span both sides of the train line. Yamuna river, one of the three rivers-Ganges, Yamuna & Saraswati- forming the holiest trinity of Indian rivers is a cesspool of industrial waste, floating dead animals. Its color is almost black and it seems like a corpse. Its chemical oxygen demand (COD), a parameter to indicate the industrial waste pollution must… Read More »Poplar cultivation

Slow Food Movement and Navdanya

The world, especially in the cities, is becoming a busy place. The system of joint families exist only now largely in the villages. As more and more people are becoming educated, they migrate towards the cities where their qualification can earn them a good living. As the cities are becoming overcrowded, the cost of living increases and ultimately migrants are not in much better condition than they were at the native places. The life has become so much hectic in the cities that the food for which we all are toiling day and night has taken a back seat in… Read More »Slow Food Movement and Navdanya

Alphonso Mangoes

Comes April and mangoes make their appearance in Mumbai. India boasts of maximum number of cultivars and varieties of this fruit which can easily claim the title of king of fruits. Its juice is full of sweetness and some varieties have the tinge of sour taste. In Maharasthra, Karnataka and Andhra states the mangoes have developed and green raw fruits are hanging from the branches. Mangoes are used in innumerable ways. Raw fruits are sour and are used to make drinks which soaks the heat  from the body nd cools you in the simmering heat. They are used to make… Read More »Alphonso Mangoes

Place of Rivers in Humanity

A River not only creates conditions for settlement of the people on its banks, it sustains the life of people living near it. It provides them with all the things of human requirements. Water for washing, irrigation, fish and most importantly the water for agriculture which provides for the most basic needs of humans and cattle. It is no wonder then that rivers had been held in great esteem by many civilizations. Rivers are revered because they nourished the life. Many saints and great men loved to live on its banks. Rivers are held in great esteem in Sikh religion.… Read More »Place of Rivers in Humanity

Land Stories 

Land used to be like one’s mother in India as more than 70% people are still dependent on the land for their livelihood. Before the introduction of modern agricultural equipment like tractors, bullocks were used virtually for all agricultural tasks like tilling the land, pulling the cart which the farmer used for bringing the produce and fodder home for cattle. Agriculture was completely manual and commerce was not a factor. A farmer produced only enough for his family needs. Agriculture was dependent on the surface water available through rivers and rains. Thus it was wholly dependent on the natural factors.… Read More »Land Stories 

Turmeric: Versatile Spice

India produces so many spices like Black pepper, Cardamom, Ginger and Turmeric. Many expedition in the Europe were undertaken for establishing a foothold in India particularly Kerala for procuring its fabled spices. Vasco da Gama was first to reach India in pursuit of the spices. Turmeric is one spice which is an integral part of Indian cooking. It is given as a suspension in the hot milk to persons who have sustained beatings and internal injuries to relieve pain and swelling because of its powerful antibacterial properties. It contains yellow pigments called curcuminoids. One member of a curcuminoids is curcumin.… Read More »Turmeric: Versatile Spice