Sunday, September 26, 2010

Beetroot 1

Unlike the farms down the hill which are irrigated from shallow groundwater, we had to rely on water pumped from about 20 m beneath us. The water was pumped to plastic tanks on an 8 m high stand and then gravity fed into our drip irrigation system. The drip lines were spaced 1 m apart, with drippers 30 cm along the lines.

The boys were harvesting beetroot during my first week in Maputo. It was an impressive crop, especially given the light sandy soils.

The Children's Centre has limited water, and the aquifer from which we were pumping already had some nitrate contamination. So although the crop looked good, we had to find out how much water and nutrients it took to grow it. This becomes our next project.

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