With a month to go before his first harvest, farmer Bashir Twinomwjuni is already a big fan of his new passion fruit plants.
‘I haven’t made any money yet because I haven’t harvested. But I am very hopeful!’
As members of a local farmers’ group, 42-year-old Bashir and his neighbours in the mountainous Kabale region of Uganda have been supported with seed and training by Self Help Africa.
In the past Bashir has struggled to grow enough food on his mountainside plot to ensure his family were fully fed through the ‘planting season’ – and he was advised that passion fruits could help him maximise the potential of his land.
Passion fruit are grown on wood frames at head height, allowing Bashir to grow other produce, including vegetables underneath.
Provided with good quality passion fruit seed, Bashir has embraced the opportunity and has spent the last year raising a small orchard that is heavy with the sweet fruit.
The passion fruit (a perennial plant) will ripen in stages continuously across the year and provide a much-needed extra source of income and nutrition for Bashir and his family during the leaner months.
With the hard manual labour done, Bashir and his family now await their well-deserved reward.