Controlling the spread of Banana Xanthomonas Wilt (BXW)
ASARECA supported KALRO to promote proven and cost-effective measures to control the deadly BXW epidemic that threatened to wipe out the banana crop in Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda and Kenya between 2005 to 2010. Six hardening nurseries, 10 demonstration plots and 10 macro-propagation units were installed at the BXW hotspots. Within six months of adoption, BXW prevalence reduced from over 90% to less than 5%, while the proportion of farmers who controlled the disease increased from less than 5% to over 60%. After 15 months, banana production recovered from zero percent in some places to over 80%.
Mitigating effects of climate change
Working with researchers from KALRO, ASARECA implemented projects to increase availability and productivity of water in rainfed and irrigated farms. The projects built capacity to harness water resources from the rain, runoff, surface, and ground water at farm and watershed levels. In Machakos and Makueni, over 1,500 households adopted water-efficient technologies, leading to the rehabilitation of over 5,000 hectares of severely degraded land as well as increased maize yields from 0.5t/ ha to 3 t/ha. Over 1,000 households previously dependent on relief food are now food secure. To ensure sustainability, Machakos and Makueni County governments mainstreamed agricultural extension and advisory services, and allocated US$ 40,000 to out-scale availed technologies