Words About Us
Nature First Horticultures Consultancy & Services LLP was founded by Harshad Ainapure & Vivek Kate in 2013. We are based in Thane (Maharashtra) and our primary nature of work is teaching and training for ‘home gardening’. We are botanists by education, horticulturists by profession, and true gardeners at heart. We help urban citizens to pursue their hobby of gardening by providing them technical and material support on personal front. We offer complete home gardening solutions to any individual who wants to grow plants with compassion, care and love..
Our story unfolds in three phases:
The Botanical academics:
Harshad and Vivek together have done masters in Botany (Plant Sciences) from St. Xaviers College, Mumbai in 2008. Their specialization was Angiosperms (flowering plants) & phytochemistry. Here they studied the world of plants through pure scientific lenses. They were fortunate to get exposed to the greatest botanical literature, extensive field experience and a wealth of knowledge from some of the best faculties around. Further down the line, Harshad cleared UGC-Maharashtra SET exams in life sciences and served as a lecturer in Botany at Elphinstone College, Mumbai for four years; while Vivek successfully ran his own private coaching classes. During the botanical days, Harshad and Vivek consistently volunteered or participated in environmental and Nature Education projects/ events. Getting a formal education in mainstream classical science has indeed an advantage of having crystal clear basic concepts and also it has laid a solid foundation for any future endeavours involving plants.
The Horticultural experience:
In botany Harshad & Vivek got to study plants academically, but professionally they were more keen at growing plants. Since 2004, they have been participating in major horticultural exhibitions in the city as student volunteers. In 2009, they got an opportunity to maintain Harshad’s aunts farmland at Murbad, Maharashtra. They treated this land like an open laboratory in order to get their first hand experience in agricultural activities through ‘on field experiments’ in crop cultivation and plant propagation. They have commercially cultivated rice, watermelon, pulses, banana, mango, pachauli and different vegetables over the past decade. Every now and then they would seek professional training from various agro-horticultural universities, institutes and expert individuals. In the journey full of early failures & disappointments they consciously discarded harmful chemical farming techniques and adopted more sustainable, holistic approach of organic, natural, ecological and poison free farming models. Continuing their research and experiments until this day, they are successfully growing veggies, ornamental and medicinal plants in this nursery farm in harmony with local biodiversity.
The Gardening profession:
While getting hands on horticultural training at the farm, the duo continued their green activities in urban areas mainly in academic institutes. Executing the theme garden plans, working on prestigious landscaping projects, they were getting approached for more and more gardening related work. In May 2013, Harshad & Vivek founded Nature First Horticultures in order to professionally take on & finish the landscape gardening projects that they were already involved in. Eventually Harshad left his lecturership job and Vivek dissolved his coaching classes to fully concentrate on ‘Nature First’. However the duo brought their teaching experience & technical knowledge on table at Nature First itself. They continued teaching botany, landscaping, home gardening as visiting faculty in many institutes and writing blogs for gardening ecommerce websites.They soon realised that professionally they would rather prefer to deal with passionate home gardeners than merely working as a vendor on mass scale plantation projects. From 2018 they started conducting their own home gardening workshops every weekend for Mumbaikars where they got overwhelmingly positive response right from the beginning. They have also introduced many natural and chemical free gardening products first time for Mumbai’s home gardeners.
Nature first is currently one of the top gardening consultation firms in Mumbai and suburbs. Harshad & Vivek are now busy bodies, applying their botanical, horticultural and gardening knowledge on continuously solving queries of general home gardeners on various platforms. We have a significant online presence with more than seven thousand followers on Nature First facebook page. We don't want urban gardeners to find themselves lost in the chaotic online world of information explosion. There are plenty of online forums created by self styled experts who make sensational claims based on half cooked information. At Nature First however, we believe in substance over spectacle. What we provide at Nature First is realistic, authentic, scientific and most importantly relevant to local conditions.