Crops at risk due to heavy rains in Dedza

Flooded crops in Dedza
Flooded crops in Dedza

­Rainy season is the happiest season for many Malawian farmers. When the rains comes, farmers put a smile on their faces, they know the time to grow and harvest their crops has come.

The majority of farmers in the Dedza District grow maize, it is Malawi’s staple food! Irish potatoes, tomatoes and cabbages are some of the other popular crops in Dedza, however maize is unquestionably the most popular. But how can all these crops be grown and harvested if there are high levels of rainfall and flash flooding, that’s the concern farmers in Dedza have.

One of the local farmers in Dedza, Ellena Saiti said rains are important to crops but with what is happening this year, the probability of yielding poor quality crops is high because heavy rains are destroying these crops.

‘Maize is the only food that sustains me and my family, so because of these heavy rains that we are experiencing this year, the chances are high that my family and other farmers will suffer from hunger this year,’ Saiti said.

Rain is essential to all humans for survival, however to much rain, heavy rains and floods are as dangerous as drought, potentially destroying their yields? These crops ensure the survival of subsistence farmers and their families and further to be sold on a small or large scale – with low yields their is a risk of hunger and income for farmers putting at risk their livelihoods paying school fees, rent, day-to-day living expenses.

Farmers in Dedza are worried about the heavy rains, any further rains will contribute to the existing food insecurity, not only for their families but for the whole of Malawi.