School Maize Farm 2022
In November 2021 a total of 87 x 90Kg bags of maize were harvested at the school maize farm.
As a result of changing weather patterns in the region over the past two years this has severely impacted the harvest. For example during the harvesting period in 2021 when the maize had been cut and left to dry in the fields before threshing, torrential rain at that time resulted in a large amounts of the maize decomposing. The changing rain patterns also affected the bean harvest which this year yielded only 3 x 90 kg bags.
The cost of rental land and farming inputs have all increased recently. To pay for the rental of the land, 18 sacks of maize from last year's harvest will be sold. In March additional sacks of maize will be sold when the prices for maize is expected to have increased. Funds raised from these sales will finance the other farm costs including the purchase of fertiliser and the hire of farm equipment etc. The remaining sacks of maize will be sold when prices are high and those funds will be used to purchase food such as rice and fruit in Nairobi for the School Feeding Program.
This year the maize will be planted and intercropped with beans on the 4 acres and thereafter in August the second season of bean planting will take place.
Maize Farm Update - April 2022
During the April school break, the Director of Patmos School, Richard Wanala Manya, visited the school maize farm. He reported that he had been able to secure a new area with fallow land and had negotiated a cheaper rental payment for this land. The soil is arable and good for agriculture. As the cost of fertiliser this year has doubled it was decided to rent only 4 acres of land in 2022. The seeds and fertiliser have all now been bought and during Richard's visit to the farm, the land preparation was taking place prior to the seeds being planted.
Maize Farm Update - July 2022
In July the maize farm manager reported that this year due to insufficient rains, the bean crop has only just been planted. The cost of fertiliser has risen significantly and is now double last year’s price. Therefore, in an attempt to get the best results from fewer bags of fertiliser, the farm worker has had to space the maize crop out this year and the beans will be intercropped with the maize. The Founder of Patmos Cottage School plans to visit the school maize farm in mid August.
Maize Farm update - November 2022
In November 2022 the farm worker at the maize farm, reported that the total harvest of maize for the year yielded 71 x 90Kg bags from the 4 acres of land that was planted. A second season planting of beans had yielded 2 x 90Kg bags of beans.
Maize farming in Kenya this year has proved particularly challenging as a result of the high cost of fertiliser. This resulted in many farmers taking the difficult decision not to plant maize this year and wait for the cost of fertiliser to reduce. On the school farm the farm worker had to use less fertiliser than he would have normally used to try and reduce costs and this has inevitably resulted in a reduced harvest. The Founder and Director of Patmos School will visit the farm in late December to oversee the negotiations for rental of land for 2023.
The maize and beans grown at the school farm supplement the School Feeding Program which aims to provide a breakfast of porridge and a daily meal for all the children at Patmos School.
To read about the maize harvest in 2021 click here
To read about the maize harvest in 2020 click here
To read more about the school maize farm