Photo Report: Africa RISING-NAFAKA Scaling Project Farmers Field Days in Dodoma, Tanzania MAY 5-6, 2016
On 5th and 6th May 2016, the project's researchers, fields agents and farmers organized and held had a Farmers' Field Day event. This gave an opportunity for farmers who are not taking part in the project to learn and share experience with their colleagues who are beneficiaries about Good Agronomic Practices. The farmers also got the chance to visit demo plots for self-observations.
The project works with small holder farming communities as end-users with the goal of improving their system productivity and resilience.
Holding farmer field days regularly over the course of the growing season offers the opportunity for farmers to learn more as well as offer instant feedback about the improved technologies they are introduced to by projects like ours.
The farmer field days were held in four project intervention villages: Kongwa (Dodoma region) and Kiteto (Manyara region) districts namely; Sagara ‘A’, Chang’ombe, Ngipa and Kaloleni.
Key observations/emerging learnings from the field days:
- More awareness still needs to be created among the farmers about the effects of climate change and how improved agricultural technologies offered by the project cushions them from its adverse effects.
- Knowledge about benefits of fertilizer use is still low generally across all the villages visited.
- It is critical for the project team to get the timing of field operations right. Especially distribution of seeds has to be on time, before the planting season starts.
- More farmer education on good agronomic practices (GAP) is required across all project villages.
Eda Musa, a farmer from Sagara ‘A’ contributing to discussions during the farmer field day.
"When you see this kind of leaf on a maize plant, then it means the levels of nitrogen in the soil are low," Elirehema Swai, a researcher from ARI Hombolo seems to be explaining to farmers.
Elirehema Swai and Nuru Mgale explain to farmers the symptoms of soil nutrient deficiency in one of the farms.
Swai explains to farmers the symptoms of earsmut disease affecting maize crops.
Yohana Isaya, one of the project's lead farmers in Chang'ombe village (right) explaining to fellow farmers how he conducted the GAP in his farm.
It wasn't all work and no fun!These two women from Chang'ombe village found it very funny when they were requested by their colleagues to pronounce the word ‘Phosphorus’, one of the key soil nutrients.
These two farmers in Ngipa village were so impressed by the quality of maize cobs on one of the project's demo plots that were by now ready for harvesting.
A woman holds up a striga weed plant to show her fellow farmers the parasitic weed which attacks cereal crops, retarding plant growth, and resulting in stunted and withered plants.
Michael Munga, one of the project's lead farmers in Kaloleni village at his farm where the maize varieties have performed well.