By Tamuka Charakupa
The need for farmers to embrace organic and bio fertilisers to promote green agriculture took centre stage at a fertiliser knowledge exchange programme in Chimanimani this Monday.
Against the high cost of synthetic fertilisers, the communal farmers in the dry regions of Chimanimani have embraced the use of bio fertilisers which are affordable and environmentally-friendly.
Farmers who attended a bio fertiliser knowledge exchange programme organised by a local non-governmental organisation at Biriri this Monday, confirmed that the use of bio fertilisers has increased yields.
“As farmers in Biriri, we are happy to acknowledge that we had a successful training session on bio fertiliser making and application. Bio fertiliser are also proving to be an effective way of maintaining our soil ph,” a farmer said.
Another noted, “As farmers we now use bio fertiliser and fermented cow manure to grow our crops and the yields are good. We can no longer keep up with the prices of conventional fertilisers.’
“Due to erratic rainfall patterns in this area, we are doing conservation farming such that we dig holes and apply bio fertiliser directly to the crops. Everyday we are learning to do permaculture,” added another.
Tsuro Trust programme coordinator, Mrs Roselyn Mukonoweshuro expressed satisfaction over the uptake of the programme in the district, urging more farmers to come on board.
“Today we had a successful training of farmers on how to make bio fertiliser together with Agritex officers and our main objective is to promote the use of bio fertiliser since it sustainable. Organic fertiliser is important since it enriches the soil and this has no leaching and also synthetic fertilisers are expensive so this is an advantage to the farmers.”
Government, through the climate proof Pfumvudza/Intwasa programme is already distributing inputs for the summer cropping season, while at the same time promoting research, production, packaging and distribution of bio fertilisers among small scale farmers in rural communities.