Tea for the soil: How manure tea feeds the soil

| August 29, 2016

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This week’s story from Zambia talks about the benefits of manure tea, and offers a recipe to produce one type of manure tea. Our Script of the week also focuses on manure tea, with an example from Rwanda.

Rwanda is one of the most densely populated countries in Africa. Because most Rwandans are farmers, the soil is becoming increasingly degraded. The soil is worked every year, and so it is getting tired and yields are poor. Organic and chemical fertilizers can provide missing nutrients to the soil.

Some farmers can’t afford chemical fertilizers, but organic fertilizers are a great alternative, made from plants and animal waste.

Alphonsine Nyirambanjinka applies icyayi in her field. Icyayi means “tea” in Kinyarwanda, the language of Rwanda. The tea is made from ash, herbs, water, and chicken waste. Although the product is being used before scientific tests have confirmed its usefulness, Ms. Nyirambanjinka confirms its capacity to rejuvenate the soil.

This script explains Mrs. Nyirambanjinka’s technique, which she uses every year to improve the fertility of her soil and the yield of her crops.