Farmers during their 6-weeks of Vegetable Cultivation Technology training in Port Vila have acquired new techniques in growing off-season vegetables throughout a whole year.
The Government represented by the Prime Minister Charlot Salwai and the Acting Deputy Minister Matai Seremaiah has took the chance to visit the practical farm at Tagabe yesterday to survey the progress of the cultivation training.
The Vegetable Cultivation Technology training is coordinated by the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries, Forestry and Biosecurity (MALFFB) in collaboration with Yuan Longping High-Tech and the Vanuatu Institute of Public Administration and Management (VIPAM).
Around 90 participants from each province in Vanuatu have participated in this training program.
Vegetable Specialist Heggar Molisa said that during the course training, participants have contributed in activities which included land preparation, sowing of seeds and learning how install an irrigation system.
The farmers have also built two greenhouses (6m wide and 30m in length), at the farm.
“The facilities enable farmers to grow vegetables all through a year,” said Officer Molisa
“We all know the normal season for growing vegetables is from March to September.
“But amazingly, with the resources, equipment and knowledge brought in by professors from the Yuan Longping High-Tech in China, both facilities have taught farmers on how to grow their vegetables off-season.
Officer Molisa further emphasised that the first greenhouse is focused on growing leaf vegetables such as spinach and Chinese cabbages while the other facility grows fruit vegetables like tomatoes, capsicum and eggplants.
Known for their fast-growth, the vegetables are grown on soil mixed with organic fertilizers (NPK) which is a combination of fermented animal manure and plant waste.
“Generally, to prepare a plot, we add in 2 bags of compound fertilizer and 15 bags of organic compost. That is what guarantees the good growth performance of the vegetables.”
The seeds used in sowing practices are all imported from China through the Longping industry.
The Vegetable Cultivation Technology program was launched on September 30 and is expected to end next week on Wednesday November 13th.