89. How Does Your Garden Grow?

bee hives in Kenya

bee hives in Kenya

As you might have predicted, this weeks HDYGG is thousands of miles removed from the soggy and wintery colour tones of late. Welcome to the garden of the the Rafiki Orphan Support Group. This group is supported by the Omega Foundation who are funded by Comic Relief. Here  ladies make 'Power Porridge' to feed themselves and sell to others. Highly nutritious, it's beneficial for all but especially those ill or malnourished. More about that in another post, here's what I saw to share with you... Beehives...

It's too dry for these plants to survive in the ground so they sit in water for the bees to feed from.

kenyan garden

kenyan garden

Kenyan garden

Kenyan garden

calf in kenyan garden

calf in kenyan garden

calf in kenyan garden

calf in kenyan garden

This is the spot where we all would sit and talk, despite the heat it was shaded and there was a lovely morning breeze. Tree roots in this area seem to mostly sit above the ground.

kenyan garden

kenyan garden

Looking out from the garden the view was of ploughed fields and succulents. There was such an agricultural feel to these fields I could have almost been at home in England.

Many ingredients go into Power Poriidge, and I'll share that properly in another post but here's 3 that I thought you might find interesting. First we have cassava.

Cassava is the third largest source of food carbohydrates in the tropics, after rice and maize. Cassava is a major staple food in the developing world, providing a basic diet for over half a billion people. It is one of the most drought-tolerant crops, capable of growing on marginal soils.

Above you can see it in it's natural form and below you see it dried. The ladies cut it up and lay it outside on a sheet for 2 or 3 days until it's dried out.

Next, moringa leaves. Now I hadn't heard of this before...

The leaves are rich in protein, vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C, and minerals. It is cultivated in poverty-stricken areas, as a primary source of food and nutrients.
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Finally Egg Shells. The ladies  save their egg shells when they are cooking for adding to the Power Porridge. They also have an agreement with a local school that also saves it's egg shells for them, in return the ladies sell the school power porridge. Egg shells - who would have thought?

Egg shells

Egg shells

egg shells

egg shells

Once all the ingredients were gathered we walked to a local mill to grind them down, I managed to spot another garden on the dusty road.

kenyan village road

kenyan village road

kenyan village

kenyan village

And though technically this isn't a garden, I did want to sneak in a photo of the women carrying the mixed ingredients to the mill. I wish you could have seen me walking with them and trying to explain using sign language that if I tried to carry a basket like that I would trip over and spill it all - it was somewhat like a Monty Python sketch with me comedy walking and pretending to fall. They didn't falter even when laughing at me.

kenyan women carrying baskets

kenyan women carrying baskets

Here's the finished power porridge, not at all like porridge back at home, but tasty and one little cup left me feeling full up for ages!

Else where, at a hospital in Kisumu, I saw these lovely colours. The look almost familiar, like I've seen them in the glasshouse at RHS Wisley, does anyone recognise them?!

And finally a parting shot from the hospital gardens.

So there you go, not the usual HDYGG from me this week, it's strange getting back to normal now. I am looking forward to your posts even more that usual this week as I feel I need to re-acclimatise! 

Thanks to all who joined in last week,  some faves include:  The Language of Flowers,  new life in old pots, the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch posts from Victoria and Jibbery Jabbery and the ice circle over on Gemma's blog.

How Does Your Garden Grow