Sustainable and Organic Agriculture Program
Area Under production: 8 acres
Crops: Yam (Diascorea alata), cassava (tapioca) and taro. Yam is primary cash crop. Approximately one acre of organic papaya has been planted. Pigs are also raised for food and sale (80 head).
Fertility Management: Synthetic fertilizers in conventional crops. Locally produced meat and fish meal (tankage) is the primary source of nutrition in organic papaya. Use of compost in all crops is being investigated.
Pest Management: Fallow rotation and hand weeding. Fields are rested for 2-3 years before replanting to minimize root knot nematode problems. Young plants must be kept weed free for maximum growth; yam is particularly sensitive to competition from weeds.
What Sustainability means to you: Being financially stable (pay the bills), be able pay family for labor. Producing food for consumption in the state. Continuing to diversify the types of crops on the farm.
Take full advantage of the Cooperative Extension service, which is an excellent resource. Also, make sure to network with other growers in your community to make sure you are aware of events, trends, and opportunities that come up.
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