With the help of my counterpart, Bassirou Ndiaye, a motivated farmer, Cherkh Fall, and 72 rambunctious women, what basically was an abandoned lot strangled with weeds has transformed into a burgeoning garden. Bassirou and Cherkh have done an awesome job in teaching the women how to double-dig, level, amend, seed and water the garden beds, which is no small feat (think impromptu dance circles, surprise showers with watering cans, lewd charades with the garden tools, amidst a constant deafening chatter). The women organized themselves into groups of 6 to help each other double-dig beds, establish a watering schedule, and decide on which seeds to purchase. Each group has dug and amended two beds in which they direct seeded carrots and transplanted lettuce. In the next few weeks we will transplant the tomatoes, cabbage, onions, eggplant, and bitter tomato growing in the pepinieres.
My counter-part, Bassirou Ndiaye, helping transplant lettuce.
Mannae transplanting lettuce into her group’s garden bed.
Cherkh Fall helping level out a garden bed. Cherkh and my counter-part have been an immense help in establishing the women’s garden and teaching the women improved gardening skills.