The Secret Behind Nkosinathi’s Incredible Vegetable Garden

Nkosinathi Sipho Mabaso‎ has one of the most flourishing vegetable gardens in KwaZulu-Natal that you’ve ever seen…and he has a special secret behind its success.

Nkosinathi's vegetable garden

Nkosinathi posted a photo of his garden on Facebook yesterday with a message saying, “This is my vegetable garden where many birds are visiting it. My neighbours are always complaining with them; they say the birds destroy their veggies…but here they don’t.

“Here is my secret – I put some food and water in the open dishes. The birds come to eat. After eating, they drink and swim…and go. And there’s no destruction 🙂 ….oh I love these guys!”


But perhaps the true secret behind Nkosinathi’s flourishing garden is not just that he takes cares of the birds…it’s that he CARES – with capital letters – about Mother Nature so deeply.

This is a man who is kind to Mother Earth. For instance, he talks of how he LOVES his plants, and told SAPeople that “even though I plough the soil, I feel sorry when I’m cutting others…”

He planted his first tree in 2010. Here it is today:

Nkosinathi's tree, planted in 2010

And here are his four-year-old Mahogany trees:

Nkosinathi's trees

“I love them,” he says.

Nkosinathi lives in a poor area of Mtubatuba, north of Richard’s Bay near to iSimangaliso Wetland Park. He did once have a nursery – ISipho-Arts And-Indigenous Nursery – but “I’m sorry that I didn’t continue with it, due to shortage of water” (due to the devastating drought that has recently ravaged KZN).

Nkosinathi is fortunate to live in a region that has running water and electricity, but his plan is to collect rain water (when it comes!).

He lives in a “poor area” and started growing vegetables for his family in 2008. At first he “germinated and planted too many plants that ended up getting dry. For the rest [which survived] I made wind breaks in my garden.” he says.

For now his vegetables are mainly for his family “but if someone comes and asks me to give, I do. And when others came with R10s wanting to buy…then I sold to them.”

Nkosinathi encourages everyone to save what’s left of Mother Nature, while others are destroying her. “Please let us teach them,” he says.