“Borehole drilling and implementation of a multipurpose vegetable garden in Chikhovo Village, Zimbabwe”
My name is Jivani Givemore aged 26. Am a holder of an Bsc honours degree in agriculture (agricultural economics and extension), University of Zimbabwe.
I live in Zimbabwe being a resident of Chiredzi District. This district is located in the lowveld and is characterised by high temperature as well as low and unreliable rainfall. As a result, the place is always attacked by droughts and livestock dies of food shortages.Simultaneously, most of the families rely on dried vegetables due to limited number of vegetable gardens within the area.
This is caused by limited number of boreholes and Wells as sources of water for irrigation. More so, the situation was worsened by the downfall of the Chilonga irrigation scheme that used to be the major supplier of these garden products in 2008. Meanwhile those who are in the production of vegetables in the area, end up charging high prices taking advantage of high demand accompanied with low supply.
The aforementioned situation triggered me to get into bailing out the community through introducing a high performing multipurpose garden. To do this, there is a great need to drill and install a solar powered borehole with an depth of 40m to ensure constant supply of water thereby avoiding shortages. More so there is a need to fence the one hactare land to be used for production with the possibility of expansion in future to cater for higher production levels. A reserve tank will constructed as well as a feeder canal since flood irrigation system will be prioritised considering its low maintenance costs.
As a family,we are already a leg into this idea. We possess a garden in our residence in the triangle estates. Operations are being done there to take advantage of the availability of piped water and market. In this one quarter hactare garden, we produce a wide range of crops from tomatoes, onions, maize and field beans in a systemised rotation to maintain soil fertility and minimise use of fertilisers. However, little benefits is being realised by the residence of my home village since the garden is almost 50km away therefore the need to replicate and implement the much advanced project within the target village of Chikhovo.
The project primarily targets to meet the vegetable requirements of the residents of Ward 6, 7 and 8 in Chiredzi district. It also targets the chilonga growth point that used to be our major supplier for the previous three decades before the collapse of their irrigation scheme in 2008. With increased production levels I would like to expands and and includes Chiredzi town in my market base.
A lot of benefits will be realised from the operations. With productions being done within the community, it means there shall be a ready supply of vegetables through out the year. Again, the production in my new garden will trigger the drop in prices of vegetables considering that it shall impacts a lot in terms of volumes available for sale resulting in increased consumption of organic products. The drilling of a new borehole shall reduce the water shortages in the Area for both human and animal consumption. Crop residues shall be used to supplement feeds for grazing goats.
More so, the activities are in line with the global call for soil conservation in that the stream that runs through the land to be used , shall be filled up to reduce runoff and the garden shall utilise kraal manure as source of organic fertiliser with minimum used of artificial fertiliser. Finally, the solar powered borehole shall be self sustaining since solar is a renewable source of ernegy and it’s use does not polutes the environment.
To make this project a success, a borehole will be drilled in the first month as soon as funds are available. This shall be followed by fencing the one hactare land to be used for production and the construction of a reserve tank as well as the feeder canal. The second month will be reserved for land preparation and fertilisation of the land . A fast growing legume preferably field bean or cow pea shall be grown first to ensure that there is sufficient nitrogen in the soil before further activities. Family labour will be used in most agronomic operations with hired labour in peak labour demands.
I shall assume most of the supervisory roles considering that I holds an agricultural qualification with necessary skills in making a project a success story. More so,family implements as ploughs and hoes shall be used as well as draught animals as way to reduce production costs. A record of all expenses shall be kept and used for monitoring the resources use. Again, the record of sales to be kept so as to determine the realised prodigy.
If receives the @$5 000 advancement, I would use it in the following way:
I would spend $3000.00 in the drilling and installation of a solar powered borehole. It shall be either imported from South Africa or bought locally. Fencing ,construction of reserve tank and feeder canal shall utilise $1000 . An amount of $700 shall be used for purchase of seeds, chemicals as well as the transportation of all the requirements of the garden.
The remaining $300 will be kept for the promotional activities as well as the maintenance of the borehole. I hope the first garden return shall be realised in the fifth month from the day of implementation.
Blogpost and picture submitted by Givemore Jivani (Zimbabwe) – givemorejivani(at)gmail.com
The content, structure and grammar is at the discretion of the author only.
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