Richmond Vale

I was fascinated and excited about ecological farming!

ecological-farming1200x628 The idea of growing food without pesticides and other chemicals is something that has always intrigued me
My name is Ms Emris Stapleton, from Chateaubelair. I am a Field Officer in the Ministry of Agriculture. I am also a farmer, an organic gardener and an active community member. The idea of growing food without pesticides and other chemicals is something that has always intrigued me, but I needed expert advice as to where to begin. The opportunity ca...
Continuar leyendo
  1183 Hits
Camille Bru

About Seedlings

seeds-banner What does it mean to work with seeds?
Seeds are fantastic! These little dry insignificant beads can give life to your lettuce, tomatoes or even a huge mango tree!!! Can you imagine? As the master of seeds here at RVA, I have the privilege to work with them at least twice a week during what we call Common Action. What does it mean to work with seeds? Well, with my accomplices, we set se...
Continuar leyendo
  1294 Hits
Richmond Vale

Julian: Embrace this unique learning experienceThe chicken project

IMG_20180122_075109 We hope they will take good care of our chicken project and see the fruit trees grow and blossom
The 6 months program is unique in many ways. It provides the students with a practical understanding of topics surrounding sustainable agriculture and climate change adaptation. For most of the students, including me, many of these topics would have maybe always remained theoretical concepts. The program is structured in several "periods", each of ...
Continuar leyendo
  2310 Hits
Richmond Vale

Benefits of the Moringa Tree (Infographic) + Uses

Benefits of the Moringa Tree (Infographic) + Uses
Moringa oleifera is a small to medium-sized tropical tree native to the Indian subcontinent. The tree is easily recognizable from its light colored knotty trunk and highly branched compound leaves. The fruits of the Moringa tree are thin, 1 ½ -2 ft. long pods.  Click to go to the Uses of the Moringa Tree The M. tree has several names in different parts of the world including its common name of “horseradish tree,” since its roots taste similar to horseradish root when raw. In Ayurvedic medicine it is known as shigru. Although the sparse crown of the drumstick tree offers little shade from the hot sun of the tropics, it is a common fixture in almost every yard and by the wayside. The M. tree have innumerable health benefits. The leaves, flowers and the green pods of Moringa are all edible and are widely use in Indian cuisine. This miracle tree is beneficial as food because of its ability to grow in a variety of climates, especially subtropical climates. In fact, M. Oleifera grows in virtually all countries where malnutrition is widespread and may be a great part of a comprehensive plan to alleviate malnutrition throughout the world. Nutritional Value Of Moringa Moringa leaves and pods are a nutritional powerhouse.It is a rich source of essential amino acids, which are the building blocks of proteins. It...
Continuar leyendo
  5433 Hits
Richmond Vale

Experiments in the Organic Garden

Experiments in the Organic Garden
The organic garden at RVA is based on Permaculture principles, which view the garden as an ecosystem, and applies a holistic systems approach to fertilization and pest control. Plants are positioned on a garden bed according to their respective plant families. In this way, by mixing plant families, the fertilizer requirements of the diverse plant families are more easily met by the soil than when growing a mono crop. The soil at RVA organic garden is sandy and in order to grow organic vegetables, fruits and herbs it is necessary that the topsoil have a structure that enables retention of water and nutrients as well as providing a cool and protected home for our all important microbes. To this end we have experimented with the burying of coarse organic material under garden beds as well as the mixing of soft rotted wood with horse manure and bio-char. This mixture is then applied to the tops of the garden beds and mulched. [caption id="attachment_10537" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Preparing the banana fertilizer The mulch, itself in time becomes fertilizer, as it is transformed by the soil microbes into rich humus. Mulch and composting materials are grown in and around the garden in the form of support species. These include trees and vining beans that are capable of fixing nitrogen from the atmosphere, the organic matter deriving from such species...
Continuar leyendo
  968 Hits
Richmond Vale

The Beginning of the Nursery

10,000 trees, that's our goal. The November Climate Compliance Team aims for propagating 10,000 trees—in the nursery that we are building—and for planting at least 3,000 trees ourselves, hopefully even more! There are a variety of trees on our list. For example, coconut, papaya, pandanus, avocado, soursop, etc. Regarding the last flood caused by the unusual amount of rain in the last weeks, the team decided on planting more vetiver grass than we originally planned. It has very deep roots and prevents erosion so that landslides are less likely to happen. We started collecting saplings from a mango tree and replanted them in planting bags. Unfortunately we didn't have enough bags left so we had to come up with solutions like normal plastic bags with holes in them. These plants were a lot more likely to die than the ones in the planting bags. We also started collecting seeds from the fruits we were eating at breakfast: papaya, avocado, and soursop. Most of the seeds are already planted in trays or cups with holes in them. We need space for the trees while nursing them, so we started building more tables for our trees. Then, we cut the steel, drilled holes, screwed the steel together and put them in the holes we dug in the ground beforehand so the tables would be stable. We haven’t put...
Continuar leyendo
  1010 Hits
Richmond Vale

Making seedlings of our own organic seeds

By Sebastian Lopez Our organic garden at Richmond Vale Academy consists of four green houses. One of them is dedicated exclusively to producing our own seeds. Being able to produce your own seeds is challenging, but is a very critical point to be sustainable. It is not only providing the perfect conditions for the plants, but also dealing with unexpected outcomes. Some time ago, we decided to have chickens in the garden. The purpose was to collect eggs for the kitchen and to use the chicken manure in the compost, since it is rich in nitrogen. However, the chickens manage to give us a hard time escaping every time they wanted and causing serious damage. Especially to the plants we had designated for seeds. But we didn’t give up. After some disappointments and many tries, we were able to obtain our own eggplant seeds. It was very satisfying considering eggplants were also very vulnerable to pests. The knowledge we gained by dealing with the previous problems prepared us to be ready when the eggplant season arrived. After we waited for the eggplant to ripe. We took the seeds, dry them and save them. We kept them in the fridge waiting to be used, and the moment arrived. New students came to begin with their climate compliance program , the same program I started before them. Full...
Continuar leyendo
Etiquetas:
  936 Hits
Richmond Vale

Useful and Pioneering Organic Pest Control in the RVA Garden

The organic gardening is very important to Richmond Vale Academy , not only because it provides food security to the school, but also because it is a way to show local people how to be climate compliant through implementing climate-smart agriculture techniques. This is why a useful organic pest control is really important for the garden in RVA . But, as every agricultural practice, it presents various challenges. One of these challenges is pests we had to avoid if we want to protect our organic food . Organic Gardens As you may know, organic gardening discards using all kind of chemical products. And, since they are harmful to the environment and nonetheless to humans. There is where the challenge begins. Considering we are under tropical weather, the proliferation of undesired bugs in your garden is something to be aware of, and have an organic pest control system is necessary. Also, for the school is especially difficult considering that the amount of people is always changing. Besides, sometimes, the garden team struggles to keep up with the tasks required. Organic Pest Control So, how are we dealing with these situations? Ideally, a garden designed under Permaculture principles will be bio-diversified enough to have natural predators to the present pests. Additionally, it should have a crop mixture that avoids pest concentration in specific areas. Hence, this is what...
Continuar leyendo
Etiquetas:
  1091 Hits
Richmond Vale

Development of the Remarkable Garden in RVA

At Richmond Vale Academy (RVA) the students are an active part in the management of the vegetable garden. The garden in RVA provides daily fresh food for the kitchen. The Garden at RVA RVA believes that education it's about practical experience. So, the knowledge that the students get by spending active time in the garden will allow them to understand the principles and techniques of sustainable agriculture. That’s why is so necessary to have a garden in RVA. Principles of the garden in RVA The main principle that we follow in the garden is permaculture . And, permaculture is a concept based on imitating nature, sowe need to increase the biodiversity of the cultivated area. So, in the garden in RVA we plant different species of vegetables taking into consideration the synergies that can be obtained among them. Also, there are different plant families that grow well together and other that compete for the same source. So, a strategic management and accurately planned cultivation allow the garden to work as a resistant ecosystem. Then, they are able to face the pests and limit their spreading. In permaculture is important to keep the soil healthy and to do so we keep it always covered either with plants or with mulch. And, in this way, the topsoil remains with moisture and the nutrients remains despite the rain or the wind. Structure...
Continuar leyendo
  961 Hits