Hanireki Chimbwandira - Conservation Agriculture

Henireki Chimbwandira started implementing Conservation Agriculture in 2008/2009 Season. He started with a small area of 6x30 Meters using complete soil cover method. From this field, he harvested maize amounting to 10 bags of 50kg each. He had used fertilizer amounting to 16kgs (8kgs for basal, and 8kgs for top dressing). 

In 2009/2010 season, he used the same method while increasing the land to 10x30 metres. He applied 20 Kgs of fertilizer and harvested about 13 bags. The harvest was reduced due to late planting. 

During the 2010/2011 season, he harvested 19 bags of maize from 16x30 metres of land on which he used 24 kgs of fertilizer. 

The field he uses is rocky such that before starting CA, he used to harvest less than 5 bags. During those years Chimbwandira was food insecure and used to do piecework to earn money with which to buy food for his family. Now he has enough food throughout the year and he can afford to sell some as in 2011 he managed to sell 10 bags from his harvest. 

Now that he harvests enough maize, he is also supporting some orphaned children in his village, a thing he could not do some four years ago. 

Ground cover method has improved fertility of the soil as he now applies les fertilizer as compared to the previous years. Despite being a rocky field, he still gets a good yield. The method has also reduced the amount of labour required, in both monetary and physically. He used to spend money on ridging and weeding, which is no longer the case. 

After seeing the benefits of ground cover, Chimbwandira wants to try pit planting in the 2011/2012 season. So far 24 families have adopted the practice after seeing the benefits Chimbwandira has been realising recently.