Modester is 10 and lives with her grandmother, Flora, who is a member of Chiomba Fruit Tree Club. Modester is glad that her grandmother is part of this project because it means she has breakfast before school – and with less work than before.
How? Well, last year they grew and planted some hybrid papaya trees which grow shorter than the traditional varieties.
The benefits? That they can harvest papayas without causing damage to the fruit, essential if they have a surplus which they wish to sell.
Modester demonstrated the challenges of trying to harvest from the tall tree and the fruit that subsequently gets damaged as it hits the ground (as shown in the photos).
She then took us to their new papaya trees and showed us how easy it is for children to pick papayas. Flora said, “This is much better. We are really pleased to not only have a great harvest but that the children can pick them so that they can enjoy fruit before school.”