Ibrahim Salisu, a 37 year old horticulturist from Kudan local government area of Kaduna State, northwest Nigeria has never entered a classroom in his life but live a happy life in a farm he solely devotes his entire time to ensure he earns a living.
Ibrahim, for the past 20 years , he has been into the planting of assorted economic trees at the Bye pass Express way by National Eye Centre, Kaduna, the capital city, known as Teku International Farm.
While observing this year’s United Nations International Day of Forest and Trees, Ibrahim enjoins people from all works of life to share in the joy of the success he has recorded in a career he started over 20 years as a very young man who always smiles to the bank in millions.
“I happened to help one man who was into the business of planting different types of economic trees by taking manure from our house to his farm and from there l developed interest in what he was doing because l observed to understood how he was putting the manure and the soil to plant the trees.
“One day out of curiosity l decided to put in practice how l observed the man planting the trees and to my surprise, it germinated and started growing. I called on the old man’s attention and there he encouraged me to continue and that was how l started and the trees l planted yielded fruits.
“Initially l started with mangoes and as time went on, l planted other trees and as God would have it, people started buying the trees from me and that was how finally took the planting of different trees as a full time business.
“I could not manage the farm alone because of the demand of the trees by people from different parts of Kaduna then, hence l had to invite my three younger brothers who wholeheartedly joined me to ensure the success of the farm.
“As l am talking to you, through the proceeds of this farm, l have been able to train to University level and the whole of my family feeds from the farm,” he explained.
Ibrahim while explaining how he manages the farm assured that during the dry season he spends N2,500 (two thousand, five hundred naira) for the maintenance of the farm.
He added, “I give my whole life to ensure l succeed in the farm and that is why l come to the farm 6 a.m and close by 8 pm everyday.
“Today l have trainees from different parts of Africa and so also people that patronize this farm are also coming from different parts of the continent.
“I have different types of economic trees such as Mangoes, Orange, Apple, Guava and many others with different species. Some bear fruits within six months while others less than that.”
He called on people in the north to plant more trees especially economic ones that could sustain their lives in the future. “The planting of more trees without cutting them unnecessarily will safeguard climate change that is affecting the country,” he observed.