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The Drought Tolerant Maize for Africa Initiative - Photo galleries - Fighting drought in Kenya
East Africa is struggling with the worst drought in more than half a century. In Kenya, a lack of supply has pushed food prices to dangerously high levels.
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Machakos is in the south-central part of Kenya. It’s normally a semi-dry climate, but this year there has been less rain than usual – only three short periods of rain since February. While Philip’s neighbors planted the tradition seed called Mbemba situ (“our own maize seed”), Philip planted a varie...
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Using the new seed, Philip’s maize has thrived, even without much rain. Philip thinks he will get about 4 90-kilogram bags from the maize grown on his farm, which is about 1/3 of a hectare.  " I am very happy with this maize,” he says, “it will feed me and my family for nine months."
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Many of Philip’s neighbors have not fared as well. The lack of rainfall has stunted the growth of the traditional maize plants. The plants produce no cobs. For these farmers, there will be no harvest. The failed crops generate no food and no income. Farmers will forced to buy maize at the market at ...
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Traditionally, farmers have saved their seed from year-to-year. As the climate changes and rainfall becomes more scarce, many farmers are considering the new drought-tolerant varieties of seed. Neighbors noted the success of Philip’s farm. Though the new seed costs about 270 Kenyan shillings (about ...
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