Ntchisi District Agricultural Development Office has initiated a manure making programme that will see over 13, 000 farmers in the district producing and applying manure in their farms, SMASH has established.
The programme would among other things see farmers becoming resilient to climate change by improving soil fertility. Dowa Senior Assistant Officer for Land Resources Conservation, Dennis Phiri said through all the district’s extension planning areas (EPAs) the agriculture sector has trained over 13, 000 farmers in the process of manure production as one way of fighting climate change and improving food security.
“Currently our farmers are making manure in their farms and backyards in preparation for the next growing season and we are very sure that at least 90 percent of them will do well in manure production, a thing that will assist us to mitigate effects of climate change,” he said.
Phiri added that, “Apart from the 23, 000 farmers that are making organic manure, 11, 768 other farmers are in livestock manure production, hence a speedy increase in the production of compost manure.”
“In addition, we encourage organic manure making since it helps the soil to retain moisture and fertility because maize stalks, animal dung, water, ash and other green vegetable matters, remain in the soil for a long period when applied,” the officer said.
One of the farmers, Linda Matewele from Chiwaliwali Village in Traditional Authority (TA) Kalumo expressed optimism that his farming for the next growing season would be cheaper than last year when he solely relied on inorganic fertilizers.
He explained that for the past years his harvest has dwindled as a result of drought, adding that application of inorganic fertilizer to his maize crop led to wilting.
“According to practical lessons that I have acquired from agriculture experts, I am sure that even in times of drought my farm produce will still thrive,” Matewele observed.
Ntchisi one of the districts in Malawi affected by effects of climate change related disasters.