We are raising funds to buy land and grow our business!

DONATE: Please read and support here! Thank you!

Listen to our radio show: SEEDS AND THEIR PEOPLE!

Mnavu (Leafy Green Nightshade)

Solanum scabrum

Grown by: Providence Farm Collective in Orchard Park, NY

  • $5.00

Mnavu is a leafy green in the nightshade family popular in East and Central Africa. Harvested at about a foot height, Mnavu can grow to several feet high.  Harvest side shoots and you will be able to harvest throughout the growing season from one planting.  Mnavu is often prepared by boiling the leaves then fried with onions and tomato.  It has a mild bitter flavor and has many medicinal benefits. Fruits and seeds are not edible. 

Mnavu is the Swahili name for this leaf vegetable. Also known as Mboga Chungu or Isogo. Same species as Njama Njama, but this is a distinct variety. In English, this plant is called Garden Huckleberry.

This variety was grown for Truelove Seeds by Kandolo Makongo, an incubator and Congolese community farmer at Providence Farm Collective near Buffalo, New York.  A long time seed saver, Kandolo is selling Congolese specialty greens seeds and Nya Nya Chungu eggplant for the first time in 2024. 

Photos from Providence Farm Collective. The Mnavu greens are in both photos, and labeled in one of them. Also shown are Nya Nya Chungu eggplant and Mchicha Lishe amaranth greens.

Days to maturity: 30

Seeds per pack: 300

Germination rate: 98% on 02/08/2024

Planting / harvesting notes

Mnavu can be direct seeded or transplanted.  Germinates in 5-7 days. 

We recommend sowing them indoors to get a head start on the season in cooler climates. Sow seeds ¼" deep 3-4 weeks before the last frost, and transplant 2-3' apart in the field when soil is warm after frost. That said, our Cameroonian grower friends in Texas and Oregon sow them directly in the soil in a "nursery," mixing them lightly into the soil, sown very close together, and then transplanting them well-spaced into the garden when they've reached 2" tall. They will grow bushy and sprawling. 

Can be harvested 30 days after transplanting. 

Seed keeping notes

Harvest the berries when fully ripe, dark, and plump. Squish out the seeds, clean them off, and dry them for two weeks in a well-ventilated place away from direct sunlight.


This product is part of the African Diaspora Collection.

We Also Recommend