My grandmother once said, ” There is no honour in hunger”! She prides herself in growing food enough to feed a stranger. Having observed her fight poverty and hunger by utilising the land resource at her disposal, I am happy to say I have my granny’s green fingers. Of course, I cannot claim to be fighting hunger and poverty yet, but, the joy that comes from watching a seed ‘thrown’ into the ground emerge to some edible form is rewarding. I have learnt that one does not need huge patches of land to make things grow. As long as there is adequate moisture and a bit of ‘right amount’ of soil, things do grow.
Thanks to technological advancement, when am in doubt about the ‘how’, I can always access internet resources and learn. This year, I have groundnuts (Mbalala), maize (Mataba), pumpkin leaves (Chibwabwa), beans (Chilemba), Cassava (Tute), basil, etc growing in my backyard garden. I hope to one day, like grandma, fight poverty and hunger by producing more than I can consume so that my neighbours can also have access to fresh vegetables – a source of nourishment for the body.
Yes, Jane Ng’andu (granny), has imparted a thing or two. I am proud to say that I am hopeful that my people (and all people), for generations to come will remember to nurture the backyard garden. There will be threats of storms, pests, poor soils, low rainfall, lack of access to land, etc; but, the backyard garden is a sign of hope and honour.
I believe, as citizens of this world, we can collectively fight hunger and disease partly by growing edible plants in the backyard garden.
I look forward to enjoying the fruit of my labour. Thanks to granny Jane! A legacy of honour and love.