What a tree does for a farmer family in Uganda.
We are so grateful that you’re interested in seeing what a single tree can do for a farmer family in Uganda.
The power of a tree is unimaginable and therefore will provide endless uses during its life time, some being direct and others being indirect.
- Improve soil fertility. A tree planted on a farmer family’s farmland will improve soil fertility when the leaves drop and decompose forming humus which is very important improving soil fertility. This will bring about increased crop yield to feed a hungry farmer family and sell the surplus to a local market to earn money to cater for the family’s basic needs.
- Stabilizes soil particles. A tree will improve soil stability by reducing soil erosion when the roots bind together the soil particles making the soil not easy to erode by runoff.
- Conserve soil water. Shade trees like Cordia Africana, Ficus and Musizi tree(maesopsis eminii) when grown with farm crops provide shade which will reduce evaporation levels of water from the ground to the atmosphere. Forexample Albizia chinesis reduces stress in coffee growing with the trees from direct sunshine. The local people in Lwengo give testimony that if you want to have a healthy banana bunch, it has to be under a ficus tree.
- Food. Fruit trees will provide fruits like mangoes, avocados, papaya, guavas and others to improve nutrition among family members. An avocado tree will provide fruits that are rich in Potassium, and vitamins B16, C, D, K, and E. In some homes, if it were not for a fruit tree growing on their land, they would go to bed hungry.
- Income sources. Trees provide different products such as fruits and firewood from unwanted branches on pruning. Wood is sold to those in need such as neighbors, schools and people living in towns.
- Good for pollinators. Flowery trees such as calliandra and others increase pollination among farm grown crops such as maize, beans, mangoes and others.
- Public Shade. Trees provide shade where social gathering such as village meetings are conducted. In other cases classes in poor schools are conducted under big shade trees.
- Treat diseases. Medicinal trees such as Neem tree, Prunus Africana, guavas and others provide leaves, barks, roots and fruits which are used to treat many local diseases ranging from cough, fever, prostate cancer and kidney diseases.
- Supply wood. Trees are a cheap source of fire food which farmer families depend on for cooking a family meal. Growing own trees for firewood reduces the stress that farmers put on local forests in Lwengo. More so, the family doesn’t have to spend their savings on fire wood but on other needs like education.
- Fodder for farm animals. Trees such like Sesbania sesban, calliandra and ficus provide protainous fodder for Farm animals like goats, cows and chicken.
- Clean air. Trees will breath in the carbondioxide in the atmosphere from cars and other polluters and will breath out oxygen which we need as human beings. By a tree living, it will clean and purify the air we inhale which supports life and healthier living.
- Reduces global warming. Trees trap carbon dioxide which is a green house gas and retain it in their trunks. This saves the planet from accumulation of greenhouse gasses that bring about global warming. This will enable a farmer family to live with less environmental stress.