GFAR blog

YAP proposal #263: Innovative Income Generation from Permaculture (Godfrey Michael Papa, Kenya)

Untitled2My name is Godfrey Michael Papa, 34, from the Amukura Division of Busia Sub-county in western Kenya. I’m an agricultural economics student at Indian University‘s Faculty of Law. I have two-years’ experience in permaculture, since completing my internship, where I was attached to devolved governments, I have also worked in the agricultural sector and later as a mentoring facilitator with Kenya Farmers Training Centre.

As a specialist in crop production and agroforestry, I’m currently practising innovative income generation activities using a permaculture design pilot farm for green maize, and Sukumawiki gardens, self-employed

I have invested my income in capacity building and to be able to provide access to affordable horticultural nursery seedlings from 5% of the farm size 0.5 hectares. Trained farmers, knowledgeable in small garden plot set-up, are actively involved in seed transplantation in own local gardens from the seedlings subsidies.

I intend to set up 95% of the 3.8 hectares each year for a mix of maize and Sukumawiki products from the nursery technologies. I have set up family household purchasing groups as part of an innovative income-generation network to support markets destinations for sales profits coming from the garden farm, of average productivity projections at 500 kg and 200 kg respectively, per season.

I‘m very proud to be involved in a multiplicity of outreach works and exchange programmes for job creation and capacity building in local community smallholder pilot farms. I’ve done this by way of the YPARD Mentorship for enhanced local skills and incomes; to be able to expand unit branches through agroforestry growth and horticulture crop production.

Project Scope

My nursery bed permaculture project is a source of livelihoods for about 700 community widowed young women, youths, and network development partners actively involved in horticulture crop production.

I intend to set up activities designed on permaculture principles and based on the protection of the Earth: ‘Earth care’, in order to create a socioeconomic impact for quality livelihoods through the ‘people care’ from cash and subsidence production outputs out of maize and Sukumawiki crops every month.

I intend to align this with the tastes and preferences of already-developed community-purchasing and consuming networks. Opportunities to store soil type of different growing media for Sukumawiki will be built on bare-root planting and containerization methods before transplanting.

I have surveyed a suitable nursery site of about 3% and 5% slope for the Sukumawiki nursery garden to manage through free drainage of excess water without causing floods. This will ensure suitable flow of inputs into the garden farm and outputs through road-access networks and footpaths.

Major roads connecting the outreach target population and local development partners will be reached through networking with agroforestry and horticulture farm production partners. I intend to utilize the smallest practical area on the pilot farms for a plant shed and shade—for environmental sustainability, to ensure that most of the garden farms system needs are got from the same system.

I have created 20% of additional garden space against crop failures, 21 m2 footpaths for nursery beds, water storage tank, garden tools store, soil storage, working shed, and 4 m2 size for structures. I have a vision to minimize environmental losses in pesticides, currently rated 35% of the overall harvest during windy weather per year.

Opportunities to design windbreaks canopy’s behind the fence will reduce encroachments, and protection of young seedlings from strong winds, reduced soil evaporation for increased quality and quantity outputs per year.

Existing Opportunities

UntitledI have incorporated permaculture philosophies in working with the natural ecosystems rather than destroying the same through unsustainable land-use practices, in crop production and sale of surplus products for subsistence each month.

I intend to carry out a suitable planning for nursery garden layout for Sukumawiki garden construction by marking contours, access to road, and water by ensuring that all the activities requiring excessive work or frequent attention are given a centralized location.

The garden system needs for shade and shelter will be ensured through selective site preparation by leaving suitable trees for the garden plot compound.

Technologies to reduce animal encroachments into the farm through fencing will be enhanced through timely identification of low-yielding gardens sub-pilot plots for fencing with a cost-effective hedge of thorny bush trees to provide both temporary and permanent protection for the nursery and the Sukumawiki garnen plants.

I intend to set up both raised and sunken nursery beds above and below the ground of the garden compound through leveling and compacting frames of 5–10 cm to manage flooding, quality seedlings and production outputs per month.

I will reduce wastage for valuable space or difficulty in operating in the Sukumawiki garden fields through technologies to create medium access paths 60–80 cm per season. Mature quality seeds and self-employment creation through revolving loans will be ensured in 12 months.

The aim is to ensure a food value chain interactions and specialization between the local producers and consumers so that all system needs from the Sukumawiki farms are met from within for improved competitiveness in production and sustainable development.

I intend to included the participation of a majority poor, marginalized, neglected, and unemployed youths into poverty reduction skills. My projected incomes and expenditure accounts will avail the financial position of the farm in one-year activity work plans.

Activity Work Plans

Step 1: Assessments for Garden nursery layouts contours preparation and access proximities to water.

Step 2: Surveys for Garden site Preparation for medium terraces per season.

Step 3: Clearing unwanted vegetative bush cover for garden shade and shelter per season.

Step 4: Prepare the Sukumawiki and Maize gardens seedlings per season.

Step 5: Transplant 500 kg seedlings and 600g of pesticides per week.

Step 6: Reduce environmental losses in productivity at 35% through windbreaks fencing, seed coating.

Step 6: Develop community farm purchasing groups for sport markets at reduced transport costs.

Step 7: Draw revenue projects to align with socioeconomic needs of the unemployed target groups youths and young women

Step 8: Monitor and evaluate the farm production outcomes from the outlining indicators of achievements for sustainability.

Capacity Statement

I have utilized both raised and sunken nursery seedbed permaculture designs for a garden Sukumawiki species, using the smallest practical pilot farms size, for least resource inputs and maximized productivity in 12 months

I have carried out garden planning for access paths, easy movements, and garden operations.

I have utilized locally available Sukumawiki nursery garden building materials for shed and fence.

I have set up small garden store for tools, office records, and farm works.

I have managed mechanical maize seed treatments, and designed 200 open-ended tube bags.

I have set up records and arranged for production inputs for easy access at the store.

I have set up shed design for grass-thatched roof for seedlings tube bags filling and transplanting per season.

I’ve set up a shade for the newly transplanted Sukumawiki nursery seedlings per season

I have established permanent shades for several nursery beds, comprised of potted Sukumawiki seedlings in the first weeks after transplanting, using climbing plants and passion fruits trees per season.

I have planned for low Sukumawiki production costs through use of semi-permanent shades for single be 60-90 cm above Sukumawiki tube bags seedlings per season.

I have planned for utilization of permaculture skills in accelerating plant succession for passion fruits trees behind the garden fence to provide permanent/semi-permanent shading for a Sukumawiki garden at reduced costs on water supply and local materials each year.

Measurable Indicators

  • Number of tools reached for the sukumawiki garden nursery layouts plans established each season.
  • Number of garden compound trees marked for permanent and semi-permanent shades per season.
  • Number of pilot farms plot sizes marked for contours, and access paths for nursery operations.
  • Number garden plots reached with can/gravity-fed water supply canal irrigation techniques.
  • Number of young seedlings protected from damage by strong winds and floods each season.
  • Number of windbreaks canopy’s planted to protect the sukumawiki seedlings each season.
  • Number of household families reached with Sukumawiki nursery watering skills each month.
  • Number of watering cans reached for nursery raising each season.
  • Number of watering cans used in small seedling nursery shades each season
  • Number of nursery shades reached with pipelines and hosepipe irrigation systems each month.
  • Number of PVC and steel pipes reached for under ground large nursery gardens shade seedlings.
  • Number of sport markets created for Sukumawiki and Green maize outputs products each month.

Budget for Green maize and Sukumawiki

  • From end month 1­–6: Design for nursery compound layouts, water supply distribution, nursery raising and garden fencing done an initial expenditure of USD 1,000,
  • End month 6–7: Garden planning for access paths, easy movements and garden operations will met an expenditure of USD 2,000.
  • End month 7­–8: Nursery Set ups expansion for pipelines, hosepipe PVC materials, can and canal watering systems purchased at USD 500
  • Administration stationary purchases for storage and production tools, and demonstration farm office records at USD 400
  • End month 8–9: Payments for labour and water supply equipment maintenance costs at USD 600.
  • End Month: 10–12: Monitoring and evaluation of the farm activities for follow-ups will be at USD 500.


Grand total projects costs in 12months: USD 5,000.


Blogpost and picture submitted by Godfrey Michael Papa (Kenya): garaproject791[at]

The content, structure and grammar are at the discretion of the author only.


This post is published as proposal #263 of “YAP” – our “Youth Agripreneur Project”.

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