Monday, November 16, 2009

How to plant a gunia shamba - 6 easy steps.

In August at a permaculture workshop I learned how to plant a gunia (gunney sack) shamba (garden).  The purpose of this is a means to provide a ready source of food for PWLA (people living with aids).  If planted outside their home they can easily pick sukuma (kale) or spinach without having to walk any distance.  I planted one outside my door, with the help of some neighbor children.  We have taken 3 meals from my shamba - the deal is - my neighbors pick and cook, and give me kidogo (a little).  One more win-win situation in Nguluni!  I recently had the opportunity to share this with the new PCV's at their IST (in-service training) and decided it was time to share with you.  All it really is, is container gardening, Kenyan style.  I will be working with friends from the HCLC (support groups for PLWA) next year and try to plant several out in the interior for people in need.

All continues to go well in Kenya - the rains have subsided a bit which has me worried.  I am told they will continue.  It would disheartening to have a 3 month rainy season last only 3 weeks when the crops are looking so good right now.  Once more our town has failed to pay the water bill, so it is back to hiring someone to go to the well to fetch water for me.

We are moving forward with the follow up World Aids Day community event - a lot a work, but great fun meeting the "hoop-di-doos" of the community.  Hoping it is a major success.

Think of you all often - miss you all, but am so glad I am here.  Happy holidays - and eat some turkey for me.   

Mutanu (Pat)

Step 1 - Collect the stones to put in the bottom of the gunia.  Fill the center "pipe" with stones to help with watering.  The center pipe is removed and only stones remain - this filters the water to the sides.

planted.  Step 4: (below) plant the seeds in any broken basin, box or whatever!

Step 5: (Right) transplant seedlings to gunia and finally - a GUNIA with sukuma!  YUM.

No comments:

My Great Family

My Great Family
Katie, Shannon, Lucy, Pat, Russ, Betsy

Contact Information

My email address is:

My snail mail address will be:
Pat Novak, PCV
        PO Box 539
        Tala   90131