Chris and Cathee Mapes, Vineyards missionaries in Pakak, Philippines, recently started an awesome organic farming project teaching farmers how to make and use “homemade natural fertilizers and pesticides.” This will save the farmers TONS of money that is usually spend on chemical fertilizers and pesticides – items that are normally bought on credit with a 10% monthly interest.
As one farmer said:
“…on a good harvest, which is May or June harvest, i get around 43 cavans, i set aside some for our consumption, and i sell the rest….sometimes i get paid 15,000 pesos…i use 10,000 to pay off the fertilizers, pesticides, etc that i get on credit with interest…2000 to 3,000 i use to pay for the hand tractor, fare, milling and other things….i barely have enough left to get basic necessities for my family….at least this time i don’t owe anyone fertilizers or pesticides.”
While this sounds good, the use of homemade natural fertilizers and pesticides is something really, really new in this area. This means that not everyone in the village is ready to make the switch as they are concerned with how good the organic products will work… as in are the fields going to be protected against rats, birds, insects and other such things…
Of course, there are additional measures that the farmers can take to protect their crops. For example, some farmers have found that using greenhouse plastic and other forms of heat shrink plastic can significantly inhibit insect propagation. There are other benefits of using poly film plastics in greenhouses too and therefore it is well worth researching these alternative options.
Accordingly, Chris and Cathee are asking for folks to pray for a good crop yield for these farmers and their fields. If things go good, then more farmers will be willing to make the switch, saving them necessary funds for their family.
Read more about Chris and Cathee’s ministry on their website, “Mapes Mission.”