Kitchen gardens go ahead despite adverse weather

Kitchen gardens funded by the Holiday Campaign

by Teresa Mellish

We saw such dry farms when we were on Kenya in January and February.  They have not had proper rains for three seasons.  The rains during the last rainy season dried up before the maize crop could mature.  As a result there is a lot of maize that is almost mature but the cobs are not finished.  Some is being cut and the dry stalks are being fed to livestock.  Some of the greener maize is being made into silage for livestock feed.

However, 20  members of the Michaka Upendo  Womens Group and 5 members of the Joy Womens Group had wonderful kitchen gardens because they had drip irrigation.

Douglas Gikundi is a Kenyan horticulturist who works for Farmers Helping Farmers and regularly  gives horticultural advice to our Kenyan partner schools and womens groups.

Gikundi sends us monthly reports and his report for March included information about what I call “a good problem”.   He said: “ Due to heavy rain in most of the days, many activities could not be done successfully.”

Farmers Helping Farmers has recently sent funds to establish 10 more gardens for the members of Michaka Upendo Womens Group and 10 more gardens at the homes of Joy Womens Group.

During the month of March, he  helped the two groups to do a vegetable nursery for transplanting to the gardens when the crops are done.  He also reported that generally, all other beds with vegetables are performing so well.

He met with the ten members of both groups who will receive the drip irrigation kits  so they could  agree on the site of the kitchen garden and the position of the  water tank. These twenty members are constructing the tank stands as well as waiting for the rain to stop and prepare the seed bed. He has advised them to use the available local stones in construction of the tank stand because stones are more durable than wood posts.

I wish to thank the donors to the Holiday Campaign for donating the funds for these kitchen gardens.

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