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ECHO Technical Notes






  1. So you want to help people in the tropics. Beautiful! The tropics are waiting for you. No matter what your abilities, you can make life better for others in the tropics. Your concern for the physical and spiritual well-being of people can be translated into fruitful service. Your first asset is...





  2. 2021-03-29 Cultivating plants, sharing seeds and cuttings with neighbors, and seeking better crop varieties are as old as agriculture. We use the word “nursery” for places where we care for and nurture things that are precious and vulnerable, like children and plants. Creating habitats to grow healthy...





  3. 2020-06-29 Seed storage in the tropics has been a frequent topic of ECHO publications and trainings due to its importance to the smallholder farmer. Access to quality seeds is imperative for agronomic and horticultural crop production. While on-farm seed saving benefits the smallholder farmer, cooperative...





  4. 2019-07-23 I discovered 100-fold gardens while researching ways to irrigate plants directly in the root zone. I wanted to know how to practically and affordably control some of the variables that influence plant growth, such as water availability and soil fertility. I read about “wicking beds,” which are...





  5. 2019-03-21 This Technical Note provides an overview of parasitic plants of agricultural significance in Africa. Parasitic weeds cause drought stress and stunted crops. Affected plants include cereal grains (e.g., sorghum [Sorghum bicolor] and maize [Zea mays]) and grain legumes (e.g., cowpea [Vigna...
39 more ECHO Technical Notes

Haitian Network Documents

  1. A “how to” guide to successfully install a natural, sustainable latrine using vetiver grass The use of vetiver grass (Chrysopogon zizanioides) replaces the need for a concrete block lined pit, creates privacy and actively helps decompose the waste. Jiji grass (Achnatherum splendens) can be used...





  2. 2019-01-20 Reviewed by Dawn Berkelaar ECHO has an extensive network of agricultural experts working in diverse areas of production and development. Many members contribute to our various publications and resources, often writing or contributing to our existing documents. Some provide self-developed...

General Technical Documents

  1. Jack bean is an excellent plant for enriching soil, because it grows under very difficult conditions. However, the beans contain toxins that normally make them unsuitable for human consumption. This document describes how to germinate jack bean to remove the toxins and increase the beans’...





  2. In every region of the world it is necessary to find or develop appropriate techniques for agriculture. A large part of the surface of the world is arid, characterized as too dry for conventional rain fed agriculture. Yet, millions of people live in such regions, and if current trends in...
  3. This short document contains graphs that show how zero tillage leads to increased water infiltration and increased water retention in soil.
  4. This document distinguishes between ‘anchor’ cover crops (that are intercropped with a main crop such as maize) and ‘secondary’ cover crops (that don’t compete with the main crop because they have a short life cycle, and that can help cover the soil at the start of the growing season). The...
  5. Four nutrient deficiencies--phosphorus, potassium, nitrogen, and magnesium--can be diagnosed by observing maize leaves. This document includes photos of a healthy maize leaf and of maize leaves demonstrating each of these nutrient deficiencies. It also contains suggestions for how to address each...
7 more General Technical Documents

CTA Publications






  1. This 8-page fold-out leaflet, practical for use in the field and easy to read, covers the subject of bee-keeping and honey processing. It gives some background to the subject, outlines processes and provides tips, tables and explanatory line drawings.





  2. 2013-01-20 Making a trench bed What do you need to start a garden? Lots of enthusiasm and, in the beginning, some hard work. A piece of ground as little as twenty square metres will ensure that your family always has something fresh to eat; a larger area makes it possible to grow enough vegetables to sell....





  3. 2013-01-01 This 8-page fold-out leaflet, practical for use in the field and easy to read, covers the subject of controlling the mango fruit fly. It gives some background to the subject, outlines processes and provides tips, tables and explanatory line drawings.





  4. 2009-01-01 This 12-page fold-out leaflet, practical for use in the field and easy to read, covers the subject of linking smallholder farmers to markets. It gives some background to the subject, outlines processes and provides tips, tables and explanatory line drawings.





  5. 2007-01-20 This 8-page fold-out leaflet, practical for use in the field and easy to read, covers the subject of controlling Striga and stemborer in maize. It gives some background information, outlines the processes and provides tips, tables and explanatory line drawings
11 more CTA Publications

ECHO Development Notes (EDN)






  1. 2022-04-12 Low-Cost Microcontrollers: Applications for Small-Scale Agriculture Echoes from our Network: A Deep Litter System for Natural Chicken Production From ECHO's Seed Bank: 'KDV-1' Maize Books, Websites, and Other Resources:WHO Monographs on Selected Medicinal PlantsandCanadian Foodgrains Bank Video...





  2. 2022-01-12 Extending Postharvest Life of Fresh Fruit: Harvest at the Right Time Echoes from our Network: Homegarden Agroforestry From ECHO's Seed Bank:Chipilín Books, Websites, and Other Resources:CTA publications,CVM publications, and App Translation





  3. 2021-10-04 Moringa Productivity with Legume Intercropping Insect Pest Management:Evaluation and Assessment Echoes from our Network: Gliricidia-Annual Intercropping System From ECHO's Seed Bank:‘Lacinato’ Kale for Home Gardens Books, Websites, and Other Resources:Food Plant Solutions andDownloadable Books





  4. 2021-07-06 Insect Pest Management: Options for Controlling Pest Populations From ECHO's Seed Bank:Everglades (Wild) Tomato Echoes from our Network: Acacia angustissima Farming Improvement Experience Books, Websites, and Other Resources:Soy Kit as an Appropriate Technology for Women Entrepreneurs - A Review...





  5. 2021-04-06 Insect Pest Management: Options for Monitoring Pest Populations From ECHO's Seed Bank:Apios americana Echoes from our Network: Subscribe to ECHO Asia Notes! Books, Websites, and Other Resources:Review of Agroforestry Design ToolTM
60 more ECHO Development Notes (EDN)

Food Plant Solutions - Publications






  1. 2022-01-01 This book is designed as a simple introduction to the more common leafy greens and vegetables of Uganda. It is hoped people will take greater pride and interest in these plants and become confident and informed about how to grow and use them. Many of the local food plants that occur in every...





  2. 2022-01-01 This book is designed as a simple introduction to the more common fruits, nuts, and seeds in Cameroon. It is hoped people will take greater pride and interest in these plants and become confident and informed about how to grow and use them. Many of the local food plants that occur in every...





  3. 2022-01-01 This book is designed as a simple introduction to the more common food plants for healthy diets in Togo. It is hoped people will take greater pride and interest in these plants and become confident and informed about how to grow and use them. Many of the local food plants that occur in every...





  4. 2021-02-01 This book is designed as a simple introduction to the more common food plants for healthy diets in Cameroon. It is hoped people will take greater pride and interest in these plants and become confident and informed about how to grow and use them. Many of the local food plants that occur in every...





  5. 2021-01-01 This book is designed as a simple introduction to the more common food plants of Cameroon. It is hoped people will take greater pride and interest in these plants and become confident and informed about how to grow and use them. Many of the local food plants that occur in every country are very...
3 more Food Plant Solutions - Publications

Using ECHO Resources

  1. 2021-01-20 Available on iOS 10.0+and Android 5.0+ Search "echocommunity" in the App Store on your iPhone or in Google Play on your Android phone. ECHO has provided resources to farmers and development workers for 40 years. ECHOcommunity.org contains thousands of documents and videos that are relevant for...

ECHO Best Practice Notes






  1. 2020-12-14 ECHO recognizes climate change as a profound reality faced by small-scale farmers. Many of our publications have focused on helping farmers cope with related challenges such as heat and drought.Increasing farmer resilience and minimizing risk have been key elements of the practices we have...





  2. 2017-05-26 By integrating legumes into cropping systems, small-scale farmers in low-resource settings can invest in the long-term health and resilience of their soils. Success or failure depends largely on choosing the right legume(s). With that in mind, this document presents insights on legume selection...





  3. 2016-09-28 Farmers in many parts of the world, because of human population growth, have little choice but to crop their land continuously, with scarce resources to replace nutrients withdrawn by each successive crop. Crop residues are often lost as a source of organic matter and mulch, usually through...





  4. 2016-03-22 Yearly production of grains, pulses, and vegetables depends on a reliable supply of quality seed. This is true for the farmer growing a crop to feed their family as well as for the agricultural worker evaluating and growing out seeds of a new crop species or variety that could improve lives. In...





  5. 2014-04-01 ECHO frequently receives questions from members of our network, asking how available land could be used to grow food and/or create income to augment an otherwise non-agricultural project. Broadly speaking, they are asking how to begin an institutional agriculture project—a coordinated agriculture...
1 more ECHO Best Practice Notes

LEGS Publications and Resources






  1. 2020-10-20 A Discussion Paper for the Livestock Emergency Guidelines and Standards (LEGS) Holly Hufnagel The objective of this discussion paper is to inform the LEGS Technical Advisory Committee on issues relating to the quality of veterinary pharmaceuticals for livestock responses in emergency situations....





  2. 2020-10-20 A Discussion Paper for the Livestock Emergency Guidelines and Standards (LEGS) Karin de Jonge and Lucy Maarse The aim of this Discussion Paper is to outline the major issues at the crossroads of gender and livestock in the context of humanitarian response, for the Advisory Committee of LEGS...





  3. 2020-09-20 A Discussion Paper for the Livestock Emergency Guidelines and Standards (LEGS) Kate Sadler This discussion paper was commissioned by LEGS to review the key issues relating to nutrition in the context of livestock-based emergency interventions, with particular attention to the following key...





  4. 2020-09-20 A Discussion Paper for the Livestock Emergency Guidelines and Standards (LEGS) Yacob Aklilu This paper was commissioned to assess livestock insurance schemes and explore what evidence exists regarding the effective implementation of livestock insurance schemes to support the livelihoods of...





  5. 2018-03-20 A LEGS-based preparedness, planning and response tool for improved resilience in the drylands of the Horn of Africa The Drought Tool is structured as follows: the background section provides an overview of recent droughts in the HoA, looks at the costs of drought, and introduces the LEGS Core...
1 more LEGS Publications and Resources

Conservation Agriculture Core Training Guides






  1. 2020-04-20 Guide Book alsoavailable in Amharic /Chichewa /Kinyarwanda; Posters also available in Amharic / Kiembu / Kikuyu / Kikamba / Kinyarwanda / Chichewa /Alur; Farmers' Booklet also available in Kinyarwanda The source documents (.docx and .pub)of these materials are available in the CFGB database. The...





  2. 2020-04-20 Guide Book alsoavailable in Amharic /Chichewa /Kinyarwanda; Posters also available in Amharic / Kiembu / Kikuyu / Kikamba / Kinyarwanda / Chichewa /Alur; Farmers' Booklet also available in Kinyarwanda The source documents (.docx and .pub)of these materials are available in the CFGB database. The...

ECHO West Africa Notes






  1. 2019-07-22 Le système de riziculture intensive (SRI) Qu'est-ce que le SRI ? Les étapes de mise en œuvre du SRI L'irrigation des plants Le sarclage et le sarclo-binage, quels sont les avantages ? Le rendement du SRI Etude comparée entre le SRI et la pratique traditionnelle de riziculture Intérêt du SRI...





  2. 2018-01-03 Techniques de production avicole traditionnelle epublication:Options de restauration des sols improductifsetOptions où l'eau est rare





  3. 2017-08-01 Foundations For Farming, an alternative for small-scale farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa How to prepare compost in 3 weeks? The preparation of organic liquid fertilizer eBook Release:Fundamentals of Agricultural Development epublication

ECHO Summaries






  1. 2015-08-05 Good intentions and viable solutions will have little impact unless we engage with farmers in ways that are meaningful to them. Farmers put a great deal of confidence in what they learn from fellow farmers’ experiences, and they are more likely to trust what they see over what they hear....





  2. 2015-07-14 Workshops are an often-used and effective tool that extension workers can use to teach new skills to groups of farmers. This document, drawn from the USAID/MEAS Technical Note on Presenting Workshops to Adults, explains how a workshop setting differs from that of a classroom/teaching setting, and...





  3. 2015-05-19 A participatory learning approach, applied at each stage of a community development project, is crucial to reaching the level of stakeholder involvement needed for lasting, positive change. The use of participatory survey and planning methods in the development process encourages community...





  4. 2015-05-01 This article draws from the MEAS Brief # 2 Reducing the Gender Gap in Agricultural Extension and Advisory Services: How to Find the Best Fit for Men and Women Farmers. Many of the gender-related topics and lessons discussed in the MEAS Brief also apply to the transfer of knowledge and resources...





  5. 2015-04-30 This document draws from the MEAS brief #3Adaptation under the New Normal of Climate Change: The Future of Agricultural Extension and Advisory Services. Written for extension and advisory service providers, the MEAS brief contains insights helpful to practitioners working to develop strategies...
1 more ECHO Summaries

Christian Veterinary Mission (CVM) Publications






  1. 1990-01-19 W. Malcolm Reid (1910-1990) was Professor Emeritus of Poultry Science (Parasitology) at the University of Georgia. He saw a need for a book dealing with basic poultry production and recruited others to help him develop one. He knew firsthand the value of poultry as a source of food and manure for...

Books






  1. 2008-01-01 The Vetiver System relies on a unique tropical plant, Vetiver grass - "Chrysopogon zizanioides", that is proven and used in some 100 countries for soil and water conservation, slope stabilization, land rehabilitation, pollution control, water quality improvement, disaster mitigation and many...





  2. 2010-01-01 A collaborative effort of various authors, this well-illustrated guide addresses a major gap in knowledge on sustainable production and plant protection in horticultural systems. Primarily intended for field practitioners and extension workers, it is also useful for technicians, students and...





  3. 2006-01-01 With its combination of traditional knowledge and insights gained from research, the aim of this revised text is to foster your interest in, and understanding of, fruit growing. Although it does not highlight specific fruit crops, the text contains a wealth of information for home gardeners,...
51 more books





  1. AVN deploys an innovatory model of development based on the principle that it is better to “ ...teach a man how to fish rather than give him fish”, applied to the entire structure of the housing market and the construction sector. If it is better to teach people how to build a house rather than...





  2. Key facts Access to sufficient amounts of safe and nutritious food is key to sustaining life and promoting good health. Unsafe food containing harmful bacteria, viruses, parasites or chemical substances, causes more than 200 diseases – ranging from diarrhoea to cancers. An estimated 600 million –...





  3. Evaporative Cooling for Fruit & Vegetable Storage MIT D-Lab, theWorld Vegetable Center, and Institut d'Economie Rurale (IER) havedeveloped this guide in order to disseminate information about this simple, low-cost technology that uses the principle of evaporative cooling to provide improved...
268 more links

Plant Information Sheets

  1. Acacia angustissima grows as a thornless shrub or small tree to an average of 2-7 meters tall with a single short trunk. It is a legume, capable of fixing nitrogen in nodules on its roots if the appropriate strain of Rhizobium bacteria is present in the soil. It is often found in tropical...
  2. Acacia mangium can grow to be a tall tree up to 30 m. It is a fast-growing tree that can tolerate acidic and degraded soils. This tree grows best with moderate rainfall and full sunlight. It is one of the major leguminous species used in plantation forestry programs throughout Asia and the...
  3. Amaranthus spp. is an annual, erect herb (up to 1 m tall) grown for its edible leaves Leaves grow up to 8 cm in length and are present in an alternate arrangement along the stem. Small flowers are borne on slender spikes within inflorescences up to 12 cm long. Fruit are small, compressed,...
36 more plant information sheets

Videos






  1. When the government gives someone permission to use your land or natural resources, which may require you to leave your land they must discuss options to avoid and minimize the negative impacts. They must give you information prior to decisions being made and give you and your community an...





  2. Compost can be used to improve the quality of your soil. You can use plant materials, animal manure and kitchen scraps to create compost. Compost will add nutrients and organic matter to your soil. This animation explains the process of creating and storing compost. Scientific Animations Without...





  3. Compost can be used to improve the quality of your soil. You can use plant materials, animal manure and kitchen scraps to create compost. Compost will add nutrients and organic matter to your soil. This animation explains the process of creating and storing compost. Scientific Animations Without...
53 more videos