By Karamagi Ednah
Information got during the monthly CELAC Luwero District Farmers Network forum
“Do not throw away your eggs shells after eating the inner content! Use it as a fertilizer for your farm crop”. This is what I learnt from a farmer during the farmers monthly forum in August this year.
The outer covering of an egg, that is the egg shell, is composed of 93% Calcium Carbonate. In addition to the calcium, it contains about 1% nitrogen, about a ½% phosphoric acid, and other trace elements that make them a practical fertilizer. Egg shells may be white or brown depending on the breed of chicken. Either way, the color does not affect egg quality, flavor, cooking characteristics, nutritive value or shell thickness. It is accepted practice for egg shells to be dried and used as a source of calcium in animal feeds
The farmers went on to say that calcium is an essential plant nutrient which plays a fundamental part in cell manufacture and growth. They also said that most roots must have some calcium at the growing tips especially since plant growth removes large quantities of calcium from the soil; an ideal way to replace it being through recycling egg shells.
This they do by sun drying them and then crushing them to powder form; after which they are placed around the crop. They said that this kind of farming also prevents the snails from eating the crops like cabbages.
Also, they said one can mix the powder egg shells with dried coffee grounds to form a fertilizer for the crops.
One interesting aspect is that they did not go to school to learn this method. It was after realization that when egg shells are used as a decoration in potted plants, the plant grows very well. This prompted further research from their district agricultural officers who then told them the value of the egg shells to the plant.