Diversity of African indigenous vegetables with nutrition and economic potential in the Lake Victoria region
Abukutsa-Onyango, M. O.
Onyango, G. M.
Macha, E. S.
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A study was conducted between November 2004 to December 2005 at three sites in the Lake Victoria basinthat included Bondo in Kenya, Mbarara in Uganda and Maguin Tanzania. The objectives of the study were to determine and document priority indigenous vegetables in the three countries in the Lake Victoria region and collect, evaluate germplasm of African indigenous vegetables (AIVs) and rank, and, select promising species. Household, market, processing and institutional surveys were conducted by selecting respondents using stratified and purposive random sampling structuredquestionnaires were administered to households, traders and small scale processors. Key informants were also interviewed using interview schedule and check lists. Self administered questionnaire was also sent to research institutions in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. Data were analyzed qualitatively and quantitatively using SPSS programme. Germplasm collection and evaluation was done alongside the baseline survey where purposive random sampling was used to collect germplasm from the respondents who had them. Collected samples were evaluated in the laboratory by taking weights, germination%, moisture content and purity. The study has revealed that there is a diversity of African indigenous vegetables in the Lake Victoria region and the main AIVs that need to be promoted as commercial crops were cowpeas (Vigna unguiculata), African nightshades (Solanum scabrum), Amaranths (Amaranthus blitum), Spiderplant (Cleome gynandra), pumpkin (Cucurbita moschata), slenderleaf (Crotalaria ochroleuca and Crotalaria brevidens), African kale (Brassica carinata), jute mallow (Corchorus olitorius), African eggplant (Solanum macrocarpon and Solanum gilo), vine spinach (Basela alba)and moringa (Moringa oleifera)