Njabulo Mzolo is a young agricultural entrepreneur in the making.
Mzolo, who hails from Pietermaritzburg, said he learnt to plant vegetables at an early age.
“Where I come from, people believed that since I had six fingers everything I touch with my hands will multiply. I used to work on farms every weekend.
“In exchange for my work they used to give me clothes and that’s where my farming passion started. I am passionate about what I do and it’s also beneficial for me because I’ve never gone to bed hungry.”
Mzolo said after passing matric he went to study short courses for a call centre agent, fork lifting and stock taking.
When he was left without work in 2010, he ventured into farming on a full-time basis.
“Around 2008, while I was living with my grandmother in Vosloorus, I farmed an open land in Extension 28 where I would plant carrots, tomatoes and pumpkin and sell them.
“My friends and I used that space for a year and we were then told we had to leave because the area will be used for development.”
Mzolo said because his family saw he loved what he did, his aunt in Villa Liza told him he can come and farm near her house because there was an open space.
“When I saw that piece of land I wanted to faint because it was very dirty, it was like a dumping site. The area had so many rocks.
“In 2015, I cleaned that area thoroughly and started planting corn and pumpkins to see if the soil is fertile or not.
“The soil was not yet fertile so I had to mix it and that’s when I realised that it was productive.
’I had to buy a 100-metre pipe to connect it to the community tap which is far from where my crops were located.”
Today in his garden you will find spinach, spring onion, carrots and tomato seedlings.
Mzolo highlighted now in spring, even a watermelon can grow from his garden but the challenge he faces is not having enough water.
“My business has been booming since I started selling because if I sell 20 bundles of spinach or carrots I know for sure that I’ll make a profit of R200 per day.
“Another benefit of having your own business is that you are not controlled by someone else. You do things at your own pace. You even wake up at your own desired time,” said Mzolo, who uses his bicycle to make deliveries to his customers.
“I have also approached the Ekurhuleni metro to inquire about land I’ll be able to use it for my business.
“My immediate need is a borehole, frosts nets, tanks and a one-hectare fence to secure the area.”
Residents have commended Mzolo’s vegetables saying they are healthy and 100 per cent organic.
To assist Mzolo, you may contact him on 073 341 4985 or Themba Nkani (community leader) on 073 671 0014.