Permaculture is taking over the world. As was shown by last week’s visit from the Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning, Mr. Michael Russell, our international influence is growing! During his weeklong visit to Malawi to strengthen ties between the two governments, Mr. Russell spent a morning wandering around the permaculture centre with Eston and other staff.
Mr. Russell was particularly interested in learning about the different permaculture zones and how they can be designed to produce a variety of nutritious food all year long. Throughout the tour, Mr. Russell and Eston discussed the issues of food insecurity and malnutrition in Malawi. Eston made a strong argument for the importance of permaculture in addressing these issues and Mr. Russell was very supportive of and excited by what he saw.
As the Scottish Government funds our current JANEEMO project, we were sure to highlight progress that’s been made on our JANEEMO tree nursery and other project-related activities. Throughout the tour, Eston discussed the multiple benefits of jatropha, neem, morninga, and msangu. Mr. Russell seemed particularly impressed by the large variety of tree species we had growing!
At the end of the tour, Mr. Russell planted a msangu tree in our demonstration staple field. The tree will help to improve soil health and add nitrogen for the surrounding crops. During the planting, the staff celebrated his visit with permaculture songs and at the end we all posed for a picture.
We all enjoyed showing Mr. Russell and his staff around the centre and were proud to share all of our hard work with them. After lots of preparation for the visit, we felt that our message about the importance and potential of permaculture in Malawi really resonated with our visitors.
- For more on the visit, visit Mr. Russell’s personal blog!