By Ritah Mukasa
Spinach is one of the profitable leafy green vegetables that many people enjoy eating. It is soft and easy to prepare.
It is also considered very healthy, as it is loaded with nutrients and antioxidants.
Celestin Nkundira 65, a vegetable farmer says, spinach is very profitable and easy to grow.
He is a resident of New Hope village in Nakivale refugee settlement where he has lived for seven years.
He was formerly a businessman in Kivu province, Congo DRC before the war pushed him to Uganda in 2015 with his wife and seven children.
In order to survive, Nkundira decided to engage in farming, as it was the only option available.
“I rented land in Ruhoko village and grew maize and beans but they dried due to the harsh sun,” he says.
Around that time, his neighbour Gorreti Ntirenganya, another refugee from Burundi introduced him to vegetable growing.
She also linked him to agronomists from Youth Initiative for Community Empowerment Uganda (YICE) who visited his home and helped him set up a vegetable garden.
However, since Nkundira stays on a small land (30X40ft) they advised him to do sack gardening.
Since 2021, he has been earning from spinach growing.
“I decided to specialize in spinach growing because it matures fast and is marketable,” he says.
Nkundira has 25 sacks and he says, he earns sh8,000 weekly. In addition, he has five other sacks in his backyard where he grows spring onions and dodo (amaranthus) for home consumption.
“I was diagnosed with diabetes three years ago. The money I get from my garden helps me to buy drugs and maintain my home as well,” he says.
“I use cow dung manure from my neighbour. I also make my own pesticides from hot pepper, ash, garlic and leaves,” he explains.