COSECHA teaches sustainable agriculture practices and water management for agriculture and the household. It works to improve the lives of families living in the difficult dry tropics. During the last 25 years COSECHA has trained about 3,000 men and women facilitators for work in one of the driest and hottest farming areas of Central America.

COSECHA has done research and has impressive experience in the following water conservation and management practices:

Water management for agriculture and watershed protection

  1. Regeneration of native forests and tree planting
  2. Education to counteract tree cutting and intentional forest burning
  3. Water management for cropland:
    • Water retention with conservation ditches, rock walls and vegetative filter barriers on contours
    • Minimum till cultivation
    • Mulching
    • Cover cropping with legumes
    • Fruit trees planted in enriched basins and on individual terraces
  4. Dikes in gullies
  5. Small community reservoirs

Household and homesite water

  1. Water harvesting and construction of catchment tanks, roof water cisterns and homesite reservoirs
  2. Filtering and recycling of gray water for domestic use, gardening, fish culture and drip irrigation
  3. Using appropriate technology to lower costs: old tires for gray water filtering, homesite reservoirs of recycled plastic bottles, bamboo canals to distribute water, liter plastic bottles for mini-irrigation, etc.
  4. Construction of hand-pumps designed by a COSECHA participant to raise water to nearby fields, gardens and fruit orchards

Using  “farmer-to-farmer” methodology
Education promoting water stewardship and using the above practices is done with “farmer-to-farmer” methodology. COSECHA uses workshops stressing practice, field days visiting farms of successful farmers, and appropriate curriculum and teaching materials. The last few years, APRODEHNI has been participating in a Farmer To Farmer exchange with COSECHA. See more about this work by watching the video, The Farmer to Farmer Method.

Recognized for its success in water stewardship and management in dry regions, COSECHA’s work was visited by more than 75 organizations in the last 8 years. COSECHA and its director Gabino Lopez have published 4 books on water management and sustainable agriculture.