Get Started with Permaculture: Water Source
Updated: Apr 12, 2021
We took possession of the land in December 2010, and started working towards a plantation plan in our Permaculture farm for monsoon 2011. That meant we had about 6 months to create the plans, make the markings, dig all the holes for trees, and also have a source of water to sustain the trees after planting them. Like everyone else in the area, it seems we needed a bore well.
Somewhere along the way, we got a survey done of the land, so we could understand the contours better. With the Morni Hills being on the north of the farm, we had a gentle slope from North to South on the land. We met some water consultants in the area and understood the underground aquifers and flow of water. The depth of the underground water was quite low almost 350 feet or so - quite different from land on Punjab side where water was barely 50 feet away. We would have to dig a tube well that cuts through layers of rock and reached the aquifer. Also given the layers of rock, we would not be able to recharge the ground water. We would have to build surface structures to store and harvest rainwater and surface run off.
There was one contractor in the area who dug all tube wells. We got in touch with him and negotiated the deal. We chose a spot at the top of the farm, near the North gate, so that our tube well would be at the highest point on the farm. We didn't think this through very scientifically that time, but it was a good decision as we built a gravity feed irrigation system six months later.
It took about four weeks to dig the tubewell, and get the pipes in etc..
We built a small haudi / water tank to collect and store the excess water coming from the tube well. While we now had a supposedly unlimited supply of fresh water, we have been very careful and conscientious about how much water we use from the tubewell, and have constantly found ways to minimize consumption of fresh water.