Farmer-to-Farmer: Mali (Infographic 2 of 4)
The first assignment of the Common Pastures Farmer-to-Farmer Program was to help Malians make better use of their land, which could not reliably sustain livestock due to a lack of quality forage. Planting legume trees will not only help to create a renewable source of high protein nutrition for sheep and goat flocks, it will also help stabilize and enrich the soil.
Moringa oleifera is one of the amazing trees common to Mali. It is known for its high nutritional value for people. Rare for a plant source, it contains all the essential amino acids (proteins). Gram-for-gram it contains seven times the vitamin C of oranges, four times the Vitamin A of carrots, and four times the calcium of milk. It is also said to increase the milk production of goats. Moringa, Leucaena, and Glyricidia grow readily from seeds or cuttings, in marginal soil, and with very little water. They produce fruit and leaves within 8 months.
There were three assignments focused on this:
- “Facilitate the intercropping of legume forage trees on small farms and establishment of a demonstration site,” by Margaret Summerfield, Ph.D. with donation assistance from grandson Asher;
- “Improving small ruminant nutrition through local forage trees,” by Thierno Hady Diallo;
- “Improving Small Ruminant Nutrition through local forage and cassava,” by Harouna Maiga, Ph.D.
We planted over 3,000 legume trees, including a donation of 2,000 from Asher Plants Trees, 11-year-old grandson of a volunteer. Cuttings have been used and shared to create even more resources for villages.
This is part two of a four-part infographic series that shares information on the assignments we undertook and the results we achieved in the first year.