Our Green Storey: How Ferns Habitat is beating the heat

Apartment champion Aparna Ramachandran talks about how Ferns Habitat has prepared water, waste, energy and ecology wise for the summers.


The scorching afternoon heat, tons of dry leaves scattered all around, water in the garden bed drying within minutes of watering, reaching out to that cold bottle of water oh so often – summer is literally glaring down at us, and is at its peak already.

As the history of our layout goes, summer is the time when the borewells of Ferns Habitat choose to help conserve the already depleting resources by just refusing to work. Hence, as a community, that is one area we are working hard at and here’s what we are doing to conserve water this summer:

1. Rain Water Harvesting – This has been implemented both at the layout level and individual house levels. Now to hope that the rain gods bless us with some unseasonal rains!

2. Holi – During holi celebrations at the layout, as a community a decision was taken to have a dry holi this season and save some water. Kids just love to run behind others and shoot out bursts of water… so banning the spray guns was no easy task. But the kids however complied with us to a great extent, restricting themselves to one fill per spray gun.

3. Reusing kitchen water – At individual house levels, most households are re-using kitchen water (used to clean vegetables) for maintaining their gardens.

Another area that we are consciously trying to work on is managing our wastes. I say tring here because of the re-iteration individuals need to continue this particular effort, in our busy schedules.

1. Leaf composter – We called over folks from daily dump to give us a demonstration of how leaf composters work. Plans are on to purchase around 3-4 leaf composters to start off with and thus handle the dry leaves with the layout itself, and make compost which all the residents can use in their gardens. Prior to this, all the leaves were collected and transported to a near by open area and left there (either to burn, or just as is).

2. Khambas/Pits – At individual house levels, most houses have khambas or just garden pits where they dump their wet waste. So there has been a major reduction in the waste going out to the dumpyards.

Waste Management Bin

3. Segregation – Separating of dry and wet waste at the layout level has been implemented, though it takes a lot of effort to sustain this practice. For this purpose, involving kids to spread awareness, create fliers, art from waste are the proposed solutions that we are working on.

Bird conservation is another aspect that a couple of our residents are very keen on as the dry season can be tough on birds, finding food and water is very difficult for them around this period. To help this:

Bird feeder on trees

1. Bird feeders – These were distributed to interested residents, encouraging them to hang the feeders on branches, or window sills. Bird feeders are hung also on the common trees in the layout. The layout being right beside the Nekkundi lake which is home to various species of birds, the bird feeders are sure to bring a relief to birds looking for food this summer.

2. Water bowl – A water bowl along with the bird feeders also has been implemented by residents, to provide water for the parched throats.

What a comforting feeling it is to see the plate of rice/grains kept in the morning for our winged friends being empty by evening.

It is impossible to overlook energy efficiency with the frequent power cuts one can anticipate in this most inopportune season to go off the grid.

LED lights at street corner

1. At the layout level, LED street lights have been installed at street corners to start with.

Solar water heater

2. Most households have solar panels installed for water heating. This reduces power consumption to a huge extent and BWSSB also provides a discount to the households that have a solar water heating system setup.

Community television watching

3. As a community, we are also organizing movie nights at a common area, where many residents gather to have some fun and watch a movie together. In this small but fun way, power consumption (lights and running televisions) at individual house hold levels are reduced for those hours.


  ABOUT THE AUTHOR
A Software Engineer working in Bangalore. Along with finding bugs, I love greenery. Looking at the way Bangalore has moved from the beautiful garden city it was, to being more of a concrete jungle within the past 10 years, I try hard to do my bit to maintain the greenery around. I also try my hand at composting, look for various options to volunteer with different NGOs, and absolutely love travell... more

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  ABOUT THE AUTHOR
A Software Engineer working in Bangalore. Along with finding bugs, I love greenery. Looking at the way Bangalore has moved from the beautiful garden city it was, to being more of a concrete jungle within the past 10 years, I try hard to do my bit to maintain the greenery around. I also try my hand at composting, look for various options to volunteer with different NGOs, and absolutely love travell... more

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