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Vetiver Technology Equips Farmers in North Leeward to Fight Erosion

Hand2Earth recently held its 4th workshop for farmers in North Leeward, focusing on Vetiver Systems Technology. The workshop, which took place from 18th to 22nd March in Rose Bank, saw the participation of farmers from Petite Bordel, Rose Bank, Troumaca, Rose Hall, and Spring Village. The training was sponsored by the GEF Small Grants Programme and a total of 21 farmers received instruction on the theory, science, and practical applications of Vetiver Systems Technology.

During the workshop, participants gained hands-on experience in various aspects of vetiver systems including land contouring, plant preparation, planting and soil microbiology. Soil samples from their farms were also tested to determine pH levels and soil composition. The GEF Small Grants Programme also provided funding for Hand2Earth to establish four vetiver nurseries in Belmont, Troumaca Bottom and Bottom Village.

Since Hand2Earth’s Farmland Restoration initiative began in 2022 a total of 55 farmers in the North Leeward area have received training in Vetiver Systems Technology. This technology is highly effective for erosion control, groundwater retention and restoring soil quality for improved crop yield. Participants are supported in installing vetiver systems on their farms; they are provided with plants, tools vegetable seeds and ongoing technical support.

Ms Vonnie Roudette who is Hand2Earth’s Vetiver Systems Trainer emphasized the significance of this project as historic vetiver hedgerows planted 100 years ago for soil conservation have been mostly destroyed leading to widespread land erosion and loss of topsoil. With the support of the UNDP GEF Small Grants Programme this project will continue to develop a Vetiver Heritage Educational Site establish farm sites conductvetiver craft training workshops engage in ongoing community education activities.

By Samantha Jones

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