Njombe. In a coordinated effort between the government and the Southern Agricultural Growth Corridor of Tanzania (Sagcot), experts yesterday started training Njombe farmers on how to control acidity, restore and sustain soil fertility using lime.
The coordinator of Sagcot Partners in southern highlands regions, Mr Adam Ndaturu, said scores of Irish potatoes farmers will be trained on how to improve soil fertility in their farms in two demonstration farms at Lusitu and Mtwango villages.
“Experts and farmers now agree on the need to raise productivity in farming. However, this goal cannot be achieved without the farmers being aware of the significance of soil fertility,” he said.
Mr Ndaturu added: “Our farmers should know various ways of controlling acidity in their farms by using right amounts of fertilisers and at the right time.”
Assessing soil fertility and using agricultural lime in neighbouring Iringa Region started last year, Mr Ndaturu said, adding that using the experience gained in Iringa, the government and Sagcot will ensure that all farmers in Njombe Region receive training.
A Lusitu potato grower, Ms Neema Mwinuka, said she was surprised to see increased harvests in her plot, which was used by Sagcot experts as a demonstration farm last season.
“They told me that I used a lot of fertilizers, but I ended up getting poor harvests because the fertility of the soil had deteriorated. They applied agricultural lime and now I have bumper harvests,” she testified.