Hyderabad: If one has watched actor Sharwanand’s recent film ‘Sreekaram’, the thought of growing your own food must have crossed the mind. Well, you don’t have to own a piece of land to grow your own vegetables unlike in the film. This Hyderabad-based company called Homecrop will help you turn your homes, balconies and terraces into farms of your choice.
Founded in 2016, Homecrop, which has inspired many urban dwellers become farmers of their own, is the brainchild of four engineering graduates Krishna Reddy, Manvitha Chennuru, Sharmila Telly, and Sai Krishna. Amid concerns of vegetables available in market being grown by following unsafe methods, the team came up with the idea to bring a healthy and organic solution.
“People have started preferring organic products in the recent years. However, there was always thought about how credible these organic vegetables sold outside are. To erase this doubt, we came up with this concept of growing your own vegetables where you will know what all goes into the making of the crop and are rest assured that it is healthy,” says Manvitha, one of the founding members of Homecrop.
While the pandemic had given people time to give a thought to health and wellbeing, many people, including celebrities knocked on the door of Homecrop to help grow their own vegetables. Tollywood actors like Akkineni Nagarjuna, Pawan Kalyan, and Allu Arjun have chosen to take the eco-step in the recent past. However, it was actor Samantha who also shared several posts on home farming in her social media handles that inspired many.
“We received an email from Samantha just as the lockdown was lifted. She asked us if we could help her build her own garden. That’s when we connected with her to set up the farming sets at her home. The coolest thing about her is that unlike most other celebrities she doesn’t outsource members to take care of her garden but does it herself,” says Krishna Reddy. Homecrop set up Samantha’s garden along with hydroponics company Urban Kisaan.
Talking about the competition with hydroponics, Krishna Reddy shares, “Both home crop technology and hydroponics is soil-less. However, as the name ‘hydro’ itself suggests, hydroponics is completely water-based. Whereas, home crop technology uses coco peat with a mix of organic manure that comes from cow dung, vermicompost, and other natural materials. Also, though both the technologies are toxic or pesticide-free, hydroponics is predominantly restricted to green vegetables whereas in Homecrop one can grow any kind of vegetables for an Indian plate, as long as the climatic condition suits the produce,” he says.
With farming being new to many, the company after a lot of iteration has come up with growing kits for various spaces and price ranges, to make the process easy. In the kits, Homecrop provides smart grow bags or grow beds (depending on the kit) with potting mix, bio-enrichers, and bio-pesticides. They also install the setup and also have several learning videos for beginners.
In addition, to make growing easy even for kids, the company has recently launched DIY kits with one smart grow bag, one seed variety of leafy greens (as growing greens is easier for beginners), bio-enrichers, and bio-pesticides.
So what are you waiting for? Get your hands dirty and get some tasty vegetables growing within the four walls of your home.