Planting a Moringa Forest in Madagascar
We are happy to report that two kilos of Moringa seeds arrived in Madagascar at the end of February. In the meantime the seeds have been hand delivered by our outstanding volunteer “Santa” to the gardeners in both of our villages.
The 2 kg will literally be the seeds for our Moringa forest, envisioned in a community meeting by the end of 2016.
We purchased two varieties of Moringa seeds. 1 kg of the most widely planted and consumed variety: Moringa Oleifera. Commonly known by many names, just as ‘Moringa’, Malunggay, Drumstick tree or Horseradish tree, the Moringa Oleifera leaves, flowers and seedpods can be eaten.
The other variety is 1 kg of Moringa Stenopetala, with much bigger leaves that are widely consumed in Africa as a vegetable.
To ensure that Zahana is growing the best variety possible, we purchased our Moringa seeds from the nonprofit ECHO. ECHO has been actively involved for the past decades in promoting and developing the best strains of Moringa. The Moringa Oleifera variety we bought from ECHO is known as PKM-1, selectively bred for high yield in warm climates.
The Moringa Oleifera leaves, flowers and seedpods are highly nutritious and hopefully will become a great tool to address rural malnutrition in Madagascar.
We will keep you updated as we embark on this new adventure of growing our new Moringa forest first in our villages and hopefully spreading the seeds all over the entire region.
We know there is a lot of information about Moringa on the web. If you are interested in learning more, we recommend two publications that have become the gold standard for us: 'Moringa' by Ted Radovich at the University of Hawaii and ECHO. We will be happy to provide you with more suggestions should you be interested. Just drop us a line.