Skip to main content

How does your garden grow?

Published on: 24/12/2013

A MUStRAIN case study on greywater reuse in keyhole and vertical gardens in Ethiopia.

Having a vegetable garden at the homestead can help improve nutrition, while surplus production may be an important source of income. Greywater is a valuable source of water in (semi) arid areas and helps reduce pollution of the compound.

The case study Greywater reuse interventions: keyhole and vertical gardens compares two practices of household gardening in which vegetables are watered using greywater (household wastewater from kitchen and washing).

  • A keyhole garden is a waist-height garden bed surrounded by rocks and stones, with a walkway ('keyhole') to allow easy access. The bed is comprised of layers of various organic materials that add nutrients and retain moisture.
  • A vertical garden is made from a bag or other vessel, filled with a mixture of soil, ash and compost. Leafy greens are cultivated in holes, cut in the side of the bag, and on top. Some designs include a gravel column at the centre of the bag to allow filtration of greywater.

The case study is part of the MUStRAIN case study series in which the uptake of Multiple Use Services (MUS) in different contexts within Ethiopia is being documented. The case studies analyse cost-benefit relations as well as opportunities and challenges for implementation of MUS.

Useful links

Resources