Farmers Adopt Arrowroot Farming in Upland Areas
Most farmers have a misconception that arrowroots can only be grown in the wetland areas. As a result, arrowroot farming is usually considered to be the role of women, while the men engage in farming other crops in the upland areas.
“In early 2020, I participated in an exchange visit to Mataara in Gatundu North Sub County where I saw that arrowroots were being grown right outside the house, and for me I had always believed that arrow roots can only be planted in the wetlands. So when I came back home, I looked around my homestead and noted that there was a section of land at the back of my house that was not being utilized.”
Mr. Muchiri, a small scale farmer and member of 3 K self help group
Even though he still had access to a wetland, the arrowroots that are planted there are usually considered to belong to the woman of the house.
“You see, men were not involved in the planting, harvest or even sale of arrowroots… I decided to utilize the space behind my house to plant arrowroots and see if they will grow. My wife later harvested the arrowroots and prepared some for us to eat, then sold the rest.”
To irrigate the arrowroots, they recycle waste water from the kitchen and water used to clean the house.
“We encourage farmers to adopt arrowroot farming in raised sections of the land, as this will not only improve crop diversification especially for those without access to wetlands, but also enable farmers to utilize the small sections of land within their homestead for agriculture.”
Mr. Nyaga, Deputy Director, RODI