Gardening in Trinidad and Tobago is something most of our parents have done at some point. Today, some of us have lost our green thumb. However, it is still safe to say, if you’re in Trinidad everyone knows someone who gardens.
Many gardeners are either trying to grow food themselves or have a love for plants. As we struggle with rising food prices and global supply chain issues more people are trying to grow more of their food at home. One of the great things we are seeing more of is people going beyond growing their food and developing unique, local products. I hope this guide helps highlight some of the local entrepreneurs creating valuable local inputs into the sector.
The Seed Vault provides high-quality local and imported seeds to residential and professional growers alike, which include flowers, vegetables, herbs, foliage, and fruits. All their seeds are organic and non-GMO which is great if you are hoping to save your seeds to grow for future plantings.
PlusMore Enterprises does high-quality soil mixes using compost animal manure and rotted wood. They are family run and have been in business for over a decade. Claudia, her husband and her boys have a true passion for agriculture. As home gardeners themselves they put a lot of effort into making sure their customers get good quality products that build healthy soil.
- improve soil microbial life
- improve soil aeration and drainage
- increase water retention and
- improves soil structure
Vermicompost is very concentrated. A handful of castings around your plants is all you need to start seeing the benefits.
Have you ever wanted to start a worm farm? Worms are the best helpers you can have in the garden. They aerate the soil and their castings help nourish the plants. If you’ve already fallen in love with worm castings and are interested in producing your own you can purchase a pound (or even half of a pound) of worms and get started.
If you’re looking for information on starting your worm farm at home, this guide should have all the information you need.
Pal-Let’s Build creates a wide variety of items discarded pallets. Using untreated wood to produce pallets is a great way to upcycle items that would otherwise take up valuable space in the landfill. They currently have grow boxes available in 2 sizes:
- Small: 28″ Length x 18″ Width x 7.5″ Depth
- Large: 36″ Length x 18″ Width x 18″ Depth
With creativity beyond Measure, Pal-Let’s Build upcycles items taking them from trash to treasure
Gardening by the Moon is based on the principles that the cycles of the Moon affect plant growth. The Moon’s gravitational pull causes tides to rise and fall, it also affects moisture in the soil. Therefore, it’s said that seeds will absorb more water during the full moon and the new moon when more moisture is pulled to the soil surface.
If you or someone you know would like to try planting by the moon, local a local moon calendar from Moon Cal TT may be what you were looking for. The new 2022 moon calendars now have improved dates and times for pruning, planting bulbs, Fertilizing and Irrigating. It also includes seed planting and storage guidelines.
Fish juice is a fertilizer made from fish, it provides a wide range of nutrients that allows plants to grow green, strong and produce healthy fruits. Fish Juice can be used on herbs, vegetables, ornamentals, landscaping plants, fruit trees, cannabis, seedlings, and soil. Fish Juice can use it as a foliar spray or compost tea.
Biochar is a charcoal-like material produced from plant materials that have decomposed at high temperatures (often during renewable energy production). During the process, the physical and chemical properties of the plant materials are converted into a porous, stable, carbon-rich material known as biochar.
Biochar can improve soil fertility, which stimulates plant growth. Healthier plants can consume and convert more carbon dioxide (CO2), thus improving air quality. Due to its ability to retain soil nutrients for long periods, biochar reduces the need for chemical fertilizers. It also reduces soil acidity, decreasing or eliminating the need to add lime to maintain proper soil health.
AgriMan Comic Books
If you have kids introducing them to AgriMan is a great way to get them on the right path to learning about agriculture while supporting a great cause. The AgriMan comic book series follows AgriMan, Photosynthesister and AgriBot on their adventure to create a more food-secure world.
These are just a few local finds. I’m sure there are many other local small businesses doing amazing things in the field of agriculture. When we think of buying local we should go beyond thinking about buying local produce but also thinking about how we can buy local across the entire food production value chain.