Some 25 agroforestry Field Technicians from the Littoral, Northwest, Southwest and West Regions of Cameroon have been trained on grafting and nursery management. They were trained recently during a four day training workshop organised recently in Bnagang by the Environment and Rural Development Foundation (ERuDeF), in collaboration with the African Centre for Renewable Energy and Sustainable Technologies (ACREST).
Aimed at improving the skills and competences Field Technicians in this region, participants were drilled on some six types of grafting including top grafting with 85% to 95% of success, side grafting with 60% to 85% of success and slide grafting with 45% to 60% of success, budding, marcoting and air layering.
One of the facilitators, Dr Alane Karuki, recommended top grafting as one the most efficient grafting method, which can be carried out with raffia, fungicide systemic, root stock and scion. He gave detail description on the application of the top grafting method.
“Technicians should make sure the root stock and scion have the same size and the scion needs to be at the dormant stage,” Dr. Karuki added.
His counterpart, Dr John Mutua on his part, gave some guiding principles, which the technicians must follow when grafting.
“It is very important to identify trees family by taking into consideration, their fruit, leaves and flowers. The deep identification can also go through the DNA analysis” he expounded.
The workshop was interspersed with practical sessions. Each trainee demonstrated their level of understanding by planting agroforestry trees using the grafting method. The technicians who proved their worth by efficiently applying what they have leant, said the technique will greatly enhance agroforestry agriculture in the region.
“All these while, I thought I knew how to graft but with this seminar, I think I have been greatly empowered. I shall be applying the techniques in my farms and I shall also teach my fellow farmers in Menoua,” Mr Temzi Jean, technician of Menoua Division stated.
At the end of the workshop, each technician was advised to teach farmers of their respective divisions on the top grafting techniques. They were equally encouraged to graft all species of trees in farm field, free of charge.
Grafting is the process in which two parts of different plants of the same family are jointed and growth together to produce fruit.