The condition of the soil is essential for productive vegetable growth. We started a year and a half ago with a pH of 5.5 and not all vegetables had the quality we wanted. Today, our garden in The Gambia has a pH of 7.0, a great success.
We built the garden of the youth project in Ballingho, Gambia, from bush land, and even though we didn’t have optimal soil conditions, we just started. But we also knew that composting would be the nuts and bolts of gardening.
With the first crop residues, collected animal dung, ashes, soil, leaves, branches we started. A first compost pile was ‘ripe’ after three months and could be worked into the beds. In the meantime we maintain several compost piles in different degrees of maturity.
In The Gambia, too, the attention for organic cultivation is growing, so we can take advantage of our ecological cultivation maxim. If the quality of our vegetables also increases, we hope to have better marketing opportunities. The praise of a store owner in Farafenni, the provincial capital in the interior of The Gambia, confirmed this on our trip a few weeks ago “everything you grow is excellent, really everything!”.
Now we hope that also sometime soon tourism will start again, so that we can also score with “special” products like rocket, beet or chard or artichokes in the high price segment. In any case, the ground is prepared for quality organic cultivation.