Deep pipe irrigation is fairly simple and inexpensive, does not require high quality water, and makes very efficient use of water.
Overstory Issue 188 (about accelerated natural regeneration, or ANR) included information about weeding in forests. Here we share an excerpt on reducing competition with weeds.
A pot irrigation system was used to water newly planted mango grafts. Instead of direct watering, water was poured into four cylindrical clay pots installed around the plant.
Winged bean (Psophocarpus tetragonolobus), an amazingly productive and multi-purpose legume, grows as a vine typically staked on 1.5 to 2 m (5 to 6.5 ft) poles or trellises. Likely originating in the Asian tropics, it thrives in hot, humid areas and grows at elevations up to 2000 m (6562 ft).
For many years, a popular demonstration on ECHO’s farm has been the rope washer pump, made from materials that are available in any country—PVC pipe, an old tire, rope, washers made from tires, and a little wood. Because it can be made on the farm it can also be repaired by those who made it.
Chickens are an important source of meat and eggs for many small-scale farmers. When only a few chickens are kept, they are usually able to meet their dietary needs with kitchen scraps and a bit of grain, and by scavenging for seeds, insects, worms, etc. However, if the flock size is increased without developing a good feeding plan, egg production usually declines.
All of us must be wondering how smallholder farmers that we serve, as well as global consumers of food around the world, will be affected by the enormous efforts being made in both temperate and tropical countries to grow their own fuel and move toward energy independence.