Published by City Farmer, Canada's Office of Urban Agriculture


Improving Nutrition
Through Home Gardening:

A training package for preparing field workers in Southeast Asia

book cover

Order from:
Nutrition Officer
Food and Nutrition Division
Via delle Terme di Caracalla
00100 Rome
171 pages, 1995,
Manual is supplied free-of-charge.

This training package, Improving Nutrition Through Home Gardening, is for the instruction of agricultural extension, home economics and community development agents working with households and communities in Southeast Asia to promote home gardening for better nutrition.

In rural and peri-urban areas of Southeast Asia, families often farm 500 to 1500m2 of land around their home. This area offers great potential for improving household food supplies: the home garden can be used to raise many kinds of fruit, vegetables, staple food crops, medicinal plants, spices and sometimes farm animals and fish.

The training package integrates food production and nutrition issues and provides a comprehensive set of materials with which extension workers may assist families in improving food production and adding nutritional value to their diets.


Table of Contents


Course Materials And Technical Notes

Day 1
The Role Of The Home Garden: Household Survey 1

The Importance Of Better Household Food Supplies

Day 2
Practical Nutrition For Field Workers (1)

Practical Nutrition For Field Workers (2)

Day 3
Contribution Of The Home Garden To Daily Family Food Needs


Day 4
Collecting Data On Food And Nutrition Problems And Home Garden Utilization:

Household Survey 2

Day 5
Promoting Home Gardening For Better Nutrition

Day 6
Plan Of Action (1)

Plan Of Action (2)

Information Sheets

Soil Management

Water Management

Weed And Pest Management

Crop Management

Food And Nutrition Problems

Recipes For Family Meals

Home Processing And Preparation Of Weaning Foods

Snacks For Young Children

Home Garden Technology Leaflets

The Home Garden

Planning Improvements To The Home Garden

Growing Plants For Daily Nutrition

Planting Crops For A Continuous Food Supply

Soil Improvement

Use Of Sloping Land

Cover Cropping

Using Wetland

Safe And Effective Crop Production

Living Fences

Multiple Cropping

Intensive Vegetable Square

Multilayer Cropping

Growing Fruit- And Nut-Trees

Home Garden Nursery


Index Of Plant Names And Alternative Crops

Excerpt from Home Garden Technology Leaflet 8

Using Wetland

Low-lying and swampy land can be very productive for many crops, including rice. In a home garden, even a very small area of wetland, such as the banks of a drain, can be used for growing food all year.

The Swamp Garden And Fish Pond

wet garden image Where there is a gully or small creek, a pond can be dug out and allowed to fill with water. If it is necessary to make a small dam, use clayey soil (subsoil) in the dam wall because topsoil and any organic matter, such as sticks and plant stems, will let water through. Also make sure there is an overflow channel which guides water around the dam wall if there is very heavy rain and the pond floods. Without an overflow channel the dam wall may weaken and collapse.

Cover the banks of the pond or channel with useful crops to prevent the soil from washing into the pond and to make use of the land. Depending on the water depth, set some plants in the bottom of the pond. Climbing plants, especially pumpkins and gourds, can be grown on a trellis over the pond to shade the water and keep it cool.

Fish such as tilapia and nila will grow well feeding on tiny organisms in the mud at the bottom, but they also must be fed daily with soft green leaves such as cassava. Growing plants such as water spinach in the pond will provide a place for the fish to hide from the sun or from predators.

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Revised December 17, 1996

Published by City Farmer
Canada's Office of Urban Agriculture