By Gay Matambo
As the country continues to receive excessive rains this summer cropping season, weirs and contour ridges have been cited as some of the key techniques that farmers can use to harness rain water.
Unpacking the various methods of water harvesting, the Acting Masvingo Provincial Mechanisation Engineer, Andrew Mupariwa emphasised that water harvesting and conservation is necessary to avert the negative impact of climate change which normally affect food security.
“Masvingo falls under region 3 and 4 where we receive very little rain fall through out the year. But this year we have received plenty rainfall. Farmers are encouraged to collect to harvest runoff water by constructing weirs,” he said.
Engineer Mupariwa noted that government is constructing weirs for communal farmers across the province in a move to harvest runoff water and underground water to irrigate gardens and fields during dry season, highlighting that contour ridges complement government’s Pfumvudza concept which is meant to retain moisture content in the soil.
“During the dry season the water which will have been harvested in small dams will be used to irrigate gardens and fields. In Masvingo district, we have constructed three wiers so far in Ward 16, 17 and 13. We have established several nutritional gardens in a number of districts across the province.”
According to the Agriculture and Food Systems Transformation Strategy, government is prioritising food security by climate proofing the country’s agriculture through harnessing water in more than 10 000 dams dotted across the country.
By Gay Matambo