Title: Home gardens in the Paschim Medinipur District of West Bengal in India: a land use system with multiple benefits

Authors: Sebak Jana; Joyashree Roy; Buddhi Marambe; Jeevika Weerahewa; Gamini Pushpakumara; Pradeepa Silva; Md. Giashuddin Miah; Ranjith Punyawardena; Sarath Premalal

Addresses: Department of Economics with Rural Development, Vidyasagar University, West Bengal, India ' Department of Economics, Jadavpur University, Kolkata, India ' Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Crop Science, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka ' Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Agricultural Economics and Business Management, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka ' Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Crop Science, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka ' Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Animal Science, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka ' Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Agricultural University, Dhaka, Bangladesh ' Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Management Centre, Peradeniya, Sri Lanka ' Meteorology Department, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Abstract: 'Home garden' (HG) is a complex sustainable land use system combining annual and perennial crops, trees, shrubs, livestock and fishery. The flow of goods and services provides not only food and nutrition security and employment, but also other co-benefits. Though HGs have attracted international attention since 1950s, it has not been widely researched especially in the context of rural India. This paper presents the results based on a field study carried out in 100 HGs in Paschim Medinipur District in the West Bengal, located in eastern part of India. A structured questionnaire was used to identify different aspects related to HG characteristics, their role in household consumption, problem areas and the different socio-economic characteristics of the HG owners. The results suggest that home gardeners with a higher level of education and who are using modern inputs are able to derive more benefits from the HGs.

Keywords: home gardens; species diversity index; food security; nutrition security; co-benefits; India; sustainable land use; sustainability; sustainable development; rural areas; household consumption; socioeconomics; education levels.

DOI: 10.1504/IJESD.2015.068606

International Journal of Environment and Sustainable Development, 2015 Vol.14 No.2, pp.191 - 206

Available online: 17 Mar 2015 *

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