Planting Papaya & Maggots on the Volcano

After working with Planting Hope all month, it felt like time to do some planting of another kind, so I stopped off to see Finca Bona Fide on the slopes of dormant volcano Maderas (Ometepe) and learn about their permaculture projects.

First up: planting papaya trees in the shade of banano trees in the kitchen graywater pipe network:


Within a year, these young trees will start to produce hideously enormous sicky-sweet papaya fruit for refrescos and ensaladas, helping to clean and save the wash water that flows from the open-air kitchen sinks uphill.  Supervising the planting here is Bennett, who was kind enough to show me around & explain the finca’s ecological philosophy & practice during my visit.

The vast lake you see below us in the background is Cocibolca (Lake Nicaragua), whose waters and ecosystem are threatened by the proposed Interoceanic Gateway canal.

Next up: shovelling citrus peels into a big trench and covering them with banano leaves to attract flies to create maggots to feed to chickens:


I like the idea of feeding food to the food of food. Or, to paraphrase a song by Silvio:

“Comprendió que los gusanos / eran los huevos de la futura.”
(“He understood that the maggots / were the eggs of the future”)

Published by Marek

Cartoonist, musician, teacher.

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