Characterization of homestead gardening in smallholder farming systems

Abstract


Isaac Mubashankwaya*, Julius Mwine and Joseph Ssekandi

Nowadays, developing countries are concerned with the problems of scarcity of land where most of the farmers cultivate less than one hector of land and consequently food security remains an issue for many families. To address this issue of food insecurity related to the small size of land holding, the majority of rural households have developed integrated agriculture practices around their houses which help them to grow basic commodities as subsistence food to their home and occasionally to the markets. This paper is aiming at reviewing the literature that relates to homestead farming practices which are broadly used in smallholder farming systems across the developing countries. In this study, it was revealed that homestead farming is playing a significant role in providing food in terms of quality and quantity for smallholders in several developing countries. It reviewed in turn different services benefited by small scale farmers while implementing homestead farming such as agro ecology services, agriculture growth, socio economic benefits, biodiversity services and we looked at the role of women in home gardens. After reviewing and experiencing several documents discussing on this research subject, the researcher gave some recommendations to different actors for favorable support to this farming practice which is responding well to the sustainability of small -scale farming systems in developing countries.

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