Story by Tafara Chikumira, Midlands Bureau Chief
A Shurugwi farmer has become the envy of his community after turning his three-hectare rural home into a little garden of Eden by practising effective Agro-forestry and horticulture projects.
The homestead of 82-year-old retired teacher, Mr Joseph Manungo of Manungo Village under Chief Nhema has become the envy of many after turning green every inch of his land.
The octogenarian, who by far looks younger than his age, specialises in agroforestry initiatives, which involve the planting of citrus fruits alongside plants as well as horticultural farming.
Mr Manungo said, ‘‘Government has given us land and the best we can do is to utilise it to the best of our abilities. I have made sure that I spaced my citrus trees by a metre and in between I alternate the planting of plants as per the education we receive from the forestry commission. I have markets in Shurugwi, Phakame High School as well as the nearby hospital as I thrive to ensure that I supply the whole district with local products.’’
Government says the Agro-Forestry initiative is one of the many projects being implemented by the second republic for the land reclamation efforts to be a success.
Midlands Provincial Forestry Commission Manager Mr Roderick Nyahwai noted, ‘‘We are in the process of expediting the sustainable management of forestry resources and that involves three major activities. That is the protection of existing forestry resources. The second one is sustainable utilisation of forestry resources as well as the development of forestry resources which also includes tree planting activities.’’
The government through the Forestry Commission is emphasising the reclamation of mining dumps, green schools projects as well as the establishment of green belts.
The reforestation activities are meant to mitigate the effects of climate change that is ravaging various communities countrywide.