The research is based on field studies conducted in and around Kumasi, Ghana and Nairobi, Kenya. An initial scoping survey and farmer questionnaire, reported in \"Informal irrigation in the peri-urban zone of Nairobi, Kenya: findings from an initial questionnaire survey\" (Hide and Kumani, 2000), identified over 3,700 farmers irrigating 2,000 ha in 55 \"clusters\" within a 20 km radius of the city centre and had produced valuable data regarding the extent and nature of this sector. However, a need to provide detailed quantitative information, regarding the activities carried out and productivity, was identified. This report describes the detailed farm studies and wealth ranking exercise undertaken to address that need.
Detailed farm studies were carried out at three of the 55 clusters, located in the earlier scoping survey, for a period of four months during the dry season between June and September 2000. All three of the selected locations lie along the Nairobi River and were chosen to coincide with the water quality monitoring programme running concurrently with this work. The three locations were Thiboro, about 20 km west of the city centre, Mau Mau Bridge, about 10 km west of the city centre, and Maili Saba, which is located approximately 15km to the east of the city centre. The farmers were asked to keep a daily diary of farming activities, labour requirements, irrigation activities, expenditure and income.
The wealth ranking exercise was carried out alongside the farm studies to provide a picture of the social stratification of the communities. Its aim was to identify the positions held by farmers involved in irrigated agriculture. This work involved a literature search, field observation and community surveys.