Anju Karthika’s front yard and terrace are decorated with beautiful table roses and ever-so-elegant adenium, in a variety of colours. Her love for the former gardening can be traced back to her past when she was in high school. Anju also stated in an interview,” when I was in class 10, I developed an interest in gardening. Particularly the flower which mostly fascinated or attracted me is the table roses with their vast varieties and beautiful shades.”
Her love for flowers made her research different varieties of table roses and ultimately around the year 2013-2014, she observed the arrival of very unique colour varieties of table roses in Kerala, which made her collect them and grow them in her garden. This incident marked the beginning of her journey to turning her hobby into a successful business.
Starting with just 15 varieties, Anju currently nurtures over 200 varieties of table roses as well as other unique flowers. She also added, “I have a huge collection of Adeniums, with over 400 varieties and shades”, in her statement. Her hobby of collecting and nurturing flowers soon became more than just a hobby as she now makes around Rs 20,000 per month by selling her flowers.
“I wasn’t aware of the power and potential of social media when I started with the journey of collecting plants. When I got connected with my friend and started discussing my hobbies and work, they suggested me the potential of social media and also added me to certain gardening groups, and this was the platform from which I learnt about several varieties of Table Rose from outside India, as well as how to source them. From here I spread my contact with sellers from different cities like Pune and Chennai via Facebook,” explains Anju.
Apart from table roses, she has a huge collection of Adeniums (desert rose), another ornamental flowering plant that is a favourite among gardening enthusiasts. There are different species of Adenium. Currently, she has over 2,000 Adenium plants in over 400 varieties. These plants require minimal care and good sunlight. They bloom in summer and the flowers stay for around two to three weeks. They are capable of growing into small trees, but their beauty is best brought out by continuous pruning. This lets the plant spread out and grow in a bushy fashion.
Moreover, she also grows several indoor plants like Alocasia, Philodendron, Syngonium, Begonia, Aglaonema and also Bougainvillaea. In one of her interviews, she revealed that “she mostly uses organic fertilisers like cow dung powder, and also uses NPK fertiliser once in a while for her plants”.
The price of adenium ranges from Rs 250 to Rs 3,000, and when it comes to table roses, they are very cheap, starting at Rs 20. She further states, “I don’t grow them like they do in nurseries. I only sell off those plants or varieties that are in excessive numbers. But if you know how to take care of these plants and propagate varieties in huge numbers, it is a profitable business. One can easily make Rs 50,000 to Rs 1 lakh per month. Mine is a small-scale venture.”
This was an inspirational story of Anju Karthika. From her journey, it’s quite evident that one can develop and turn his or her hobbies into leading businesses and make oneself self-independent.
Credit: The Better India
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