There’s a swearing-in ceremony for new Peace Corps Volunteers taking place in our garden right now, which has caused me to stop moving plants around long enough to write a new post.
A couple of weeks ago, a friend organized an outing to a wonderful place called the Gako Organic Farming Training Centre (GOFTC) — located just on the edge of the Kigali city limits. Our host and guide there was Richard Munyerango, founder and Managing Director of the center and a tremendous source of knowledge on small farming techniques.
Since 2000, GOFTC has trained over 60,000 farmers from Rwanda, Burundi, and the D.R.Congo, among them demobilized soldiers, disabled persons, women’s groups, and many participants in the Send a Cow and OXFARM programs.
Our first stop of the morning was a small house surrounded by a fenced demonstration garden of about an acre, which Richard had created to show how a small holding could feed a family.
To the right of the trench and filters are mounded rows of vegetable crops. (Click any photo to enlarge it. To scroll through all the enlarged images, click on ‘Continue reading’ below and on any thumbnail in the gallery.)
Behind the hutch are stalls for a cows or some goats, but neither were in residence when we visited. The center raised chickens until the Avian Flu scare of several years ago. Richard hopes to re-introduce them eventually.
The rabbit cages are raised so that droppings and urine can be captured.
(To watch a charming video about making a keyhole garden (by the organization Send a Cow), click here.)
A variety of trees surround the garden. This one is a Moringa, which provides food for both humans and animals from its leaves.
In my next post, I’ll continue with our tour of the main GOFTC facility.