At this time of the year the farm is busy growing horticultural crops under irrigation. Onions, tomatoes, rape, cabbages, green pepper, hot pepper, garlic etc. are now growing on the farm and the first harvests have already taken place. The youth are learning a lot about the management of these crops from our farm manager Angellah. Next to that, we also grow some of these crops to generate an income for the farm and sustain some of the activities that are taking place such as the purchase of seeds for next year.
The soy harvest from earlier this year was a little disappointing. Towards the end of the rainy season, the soybean was unfortunately hit by ‘soybean rust’. This is a disease that has affected many soybean plants in Malawi this year. It causes the plant to die while the soybeans are not yet ripe. Nevertheless, the yield this year is better than last year. With the new storage space on the farm, the soy can now be easily stored. Because we bought certified soy seed, we can sell the soy later this year as seed again. This will give us a better price. It is difficult for the youth to keep the soy and not sell it now and receive cash fast. But we all agreed to store the soy and wait to sell the soy later this year.
Recently the youth went on 2 excursions to learn from other farmers and get inspired. During the first excursion the youth visited a horticultural farm, a fish farm and Rose’s farm. Rose also paid a visit to the youth test farm to teach the youth more about the establishment of good crop nurseries and management of banana trees. When the youth went to her farm, she showed them her crops, bananas, livestock and mushrooms. The second excursion was to the LUANAR (Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources) university farms where the youth were able to see fish farming, horticulture and livestock farming.
Soon we will be documenting some stories of the youth who participated in the program at the farm. Hopefully we can share some video’s for you to see the impact the project has had on their lives.
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Here is a link to an article that was written for the magazine VORK: