Growing Like Weeds

Don’t misread the title of this post.  I said growing like weeds, not growing weeds.  One of the reasons I love Uganda is because the vegetables are bigger and healthier than I typically see anywhere in the US.  And I love the variety that the quickly-changing crops bring to my  work.  Every season has different tasks, and if you glance away for too long, the gardens will look completely different when you see them again.

Here are the latest photos from our gardens:

The zucchini plants are monstrous! Ok, so I’m kneeling in this picture, but still. We harvested over 50 lbs. of zucchini in one week.

The lettuce has been producing bountifully. We have now been enjoying fresh salads for over a month, and the lettuce is still sweet!

Cabbage. My team complains a bit about its performance, but it’s bigger than what I’ve ever seen.

Our tomato plants were so amazingly healthy and strong! The thickest stems I’ve ever seen on young plants. (I speak in the past tense because they didn’t have the best ending, but that’s a topic for another time.)

Collards (known as sukuma wiki in Kenya) have been champion producers. We provide these several times a week for staff lunches, feeding over 50 people each time.

The agriculture team bundling collards for sale after harvesting. The collards grow so quickly it’s more than the staff can consume at lunch time.

Cucumbers and carrots.

The sweet corn! I’ve heard that some varieties don’t produce when moved to the tropics, but this one did!

I was worried about the height of the sweet corn at first, but found out that it’s just the nature of the variety. Tasseling at 3-4 tall!


The wild watermelons! They are threatening to conquer neighboring crops.

And that’s the tour of our gardens. Hope you enjoyed it!  If I get more computer time, you will soon seen the harvest. Stay tuned…


Posted on June 6, 2012, in Agriculture, Heart for Uganda, Uganda. Bookmark the permalink. 14 Comments.

  1. The veggies look real healthy! Great job to you and your team!

  2. Good morning, Emily. Do you sell your produce to the community?

    • Hi Aunt Debbie, yes we do. We’ve sold carrots, sweet corn, collards and soon cabbage. Other “specialty vegetables” we are working to market in Kampalala (the capital) where their value is much higher. Other produce is used by the organization for staff lunches, and soon for the children that will be staying in the dormitory.

  3. So much green!!! Wonderful! The Lord sure is blessing your efforts. :-)

  4. It looks like all that stuff I taught you about being humble and green is finally paying off. Way to go Beanster!

  5. that is amazing!!! What an abundant blessing! sooo happy for you! Hope to soon have garden photos to show you. but since my garden is just being planted, there isn’t much to show :)

  6. Fantastic! Bob HAD to have me look at these this evening–we are soooo impressed! Praise the LORD for the bounty!

  7. Do I recall someone being worried about the veggies growing using this new farming style…? Silly beans, Great effort, blessed return !

  8. Kaitlin Domanoski

    Looks delicious!!

  9. Joelle Graber

    thanks for faithfully posting, Emily! i enjoy reading about what you’re doing – I love working with plants and animals, and a culture similar to yours is very dear to my heart! what variety of sweet corn worked for you? would be curious to try it in Grenada; not sure what all was tried there, but no one was successful. ~Joelle

    • Joelle, great to hear from you! I’ll get back to you on the variety. It was short-season, I know that. People here have hit or miss success as well. Next season we are trying an OPV (open pollinated variety), if that works, it would be wonderful.

    • Joelle, the sweet corn used was a short-season hybrid called ‘Ecstasy’. Sorry it’s not OPV, but we are going to be trying an OPV sweet corn this coming season.

  10. Thanks, y’all! Seriously, I can’t take too much credit. The team has put in a ton of work, plus if you put seed in the soil, give it a little water and weed it, it just grows like this! :)

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