By Moses Muwulya
BUKOMASIMBI. A strict, principled farmer, Emmanuel Yiga’s farm is hardly accessed. The progressive vanilla and coffee farmer ensured that he even puts a warning message to the potential trespassers.
This is the reason why Yiga argues Kitovu mobile farm school trainees attached to him for practical skills, in what is dubbed as “Industrial attachment” to fully exploit the golden opportunity to learn for the three months they are going to stay with him.
“You have to use this chance;ask whatever you want to know about vanilla” Yiga,a former boda-bod rider, who turned a millionaire after switching to farming, urges the excited group of trainees as he takes them through the different ways of planting vanilla.
A wonderful and exciting practical experience, Industrial attachment is part of the three-year mobile farm school training where trainees are attached to various progressive farmers to share experience, acquire skills and knowledge through hands on training and gain more practical skills
It is in this vein that 229 mobile farm school trainees were attached to various prominent farmers in Bukomansimbi District. These are going to stay with them for three months and are so far doing well,learning practical farming skills as shared by some group members.
Starting with the group at Yiga’s farm, Pascal Kakooza says he is happy that he has the golden chance to visit this prominent farmer’s garden“and could not get to know him despite having lived on the villages for years”
After telling them the benefits of growing and returns from Vanilla,where single vanilla plant can yield close to Shs 1 Million, Monday Edward says he is now convinced that he can grow something small and get huge returns. “We were taught about this and hardly believed it but as the vanilla farmer explained using one plant of vanilla”
For Angela Nakazibwe learning how to handle vanilla and make it yield in plenty is so far her greatest experience. “I have been hearing of castrating vanilla, wondering if plants, too, can be castrated”
Those linked to progressive coffee farmers
A group that is attached to Immaculate Nalubuge, a progressive coffee farmer at Bugana village, is also learning a lot as they go on to share:David Kafeero is happy to practically learn about digging coffee holes especially being keen on the right measurements and on which side to put the top soil as one digs holes as well as the standard space between each plant.
As for Tonny Ssali,learning about coffee disease prevention and spread control was such exciting. They were advised to deep pangas in detergent or put them in fire before using it to prune another coffee plant.
The group linked to a prominent Livestock farmer
Ambassador Joseph Tomusange, a notable progressive livestock farmer at Kigaba village, was also given a group of trainees and have since learnt and expect to learn a lot as they share.
Joeseph Keeya says he has practically learnt how to spray wounded animals as well as controlling diseases from the farm is his best lesson.
Semaganda Ronald observed the need for integrated farming after looking at the cabbages gardens where remains which are not good for sell are turned into livestock feeds. He also noted farm planning as seen is also been taken note where segments of the farm land were allocated for different projects.
Susan Namanda, observed promotion of hygiene where pig sties were spotless clean and vowed to emulate this practice.
Progressive farmers also confessed to have learnt something new from the trainees. For example,he was surprised to happy to see a boys peeling matooke something she said some girls can’t do