Quick maturity, tender leaves that are easy to cook and high-yielding.
Those are the features of a unique sukuma wiki variety being showcased at the ongoing Nairobi Trade Fair.
The malkia kales have broad-leaves that look like green flowers.
They are not unique to farmers, only that they are rarely grown. The malkia variety is being showcased by the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organisation at the show.
Winfridah Wasswa, a research technologist from Kalro in Kabete says the malkia kales have been in the market since the 90s, “but they are not popular unlike the ordinary makes.”
Some of the commonly grown kale varieties include Marrow Stem, Thousand Headed, Sukuma Wiki Hybrid, Thousand Headed, Collard Southern Georgia and Collard Mfalme F1. Wasswa says the malkia kales are unique and elegant hence the name malkia.
Malkia matures in 40 days from the date of transplanting unlike ordinary varieties that mature after 50 days.
“They are also high yielding with about 20-25 tonnes per acre. The leaves are tender and tastier and takes a shorter time to cook hence saving on energy.”
The researcher said the agronomic practices for growing the malkia variety are not different from the ordinary ones.