South Africa: Helping Smallholders Improve Crop Production
Miss Matu Gwala, a small-scale farmer in the village of Swayimane in KwaZulu Natal province in South Africa, plants and sells vegetables, including spinach, green pepper, sweet potatoes, mealies (maize) and amadumbe (taro).
But in recent years, her crop production has fallen due to unpredictable and heavy rainfalls, drought spells and pest problems. With support from SANBI’s uMngeni Resilience Project, Miss Gwala started receiving valuable information on small-scale farming techniques, as well as maize seeds to improve her crop production. This has improved her ability to earn more money to pay for her children’s school fees.
Meanwhile, with changing rainfall patterns in Swayimane, Mr. Joseph Ncube has learned of the opportunities provided in night mist to help grow his crops. Through interacting closely with the uMngeni Resilience Project team, his maize and vegetable garden has helped him increase both maize and beans production. The project has also helped him save money from buying seeds for his vegetable garden.