29th November 2012
by Paul Robbins, one of the volunteers currently out in Cape Town with Amawele on their first volunteer trip .
15 Amawele volunteers from Ireland ventured to Cape Town to create a sustainable organic vegetable garden for Manenberg high school.
Starting from any simple part of uncultivated garden a plan was put into reality the assistance of Soil for Life a local South African NGO.
Six raised beds were constructed using double digging and a sandwich of organic materials part of the day mulch. A mixed cropping of spring onion, cabbage, lettuce, tomato, spinach and ‘Brinstal’ were introduced Either from seed or from plugs. Recycled tyres were then utilised to create growing areas with bamboo wigwams supports constructed for climbing beans.
Finally lazy beds were constructed to house crops of butternut squash marrow, cucumber and pumpkins as well as a bed for carrots and a herb garden.
The new garden was demarcated and protected from the prevailing winds by enclosing it with a wind break. Duly watered and labelled the new garden was now ready to be handed over to the care of the school.
In a matter of several weeks first crops of radish will be ready to harvest soon followed by spring onions and lettuce. When the school returns from their summer holidays in January the squash, marrows and spinach will be adorning the plates of the learners who can enjoy the great taste and nutrition of freshly harvested organic vegetables.
A few learners from Manenberg High School took time off from their schoolwork June to entertain the volunteers with some Maramba music and they also aided the volunteers in the garden while they were planting.
Next on the agenda is a garden in Vuyani primary school watch this space…