Bongani Ndlovu, left, digs holes while his brothers Themba Moyo, middle, and Silas Ndlovu, right, plant maize by dropping the seeds and using their feet to cover the hole with soil. The brothers’ field, pictured in January, is located in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe’s second-largest city. People plant maize during the rainy season, which generally takes place between November and April, using naturally treated organic seed. Genetically-modified seeds aren’t allowed in Zimbabwe.
Daniel Moyo sprays insecticide provided to him by the Zambian government on his maize field in Chilanga, a farming area within the capital city. The 5-acre field was attacked by armyworms, small, black, striped caterpillars that feast on crops. The pests have appeared in increasing numbers around Zambia, alarming Vice President Inonge Wina, who says they might threaten food security if they’re not eradicated.
Rainy season in Zambia regularly brings flooding in Lusaka because of poor drainage in the capital city. But intrepid entrepreneurs see an opportunity to earn money when floodwater fills the streets: These men set up tires and other objects to allow pedestrians to, for a fee, traverse the flooded area without stepping into the water.
Mercy Zveushe, 39 (foreground) and Brenda Munetsi, 26 (in blue shirt) fetch water from an open well in Southlea Park, a section of Harare, Zimbabwe’s capital city. Some people who live in the settlement say they don’t have access to the tap water that elsewhere is provided by the Harare City Council. Many residents dig their own wells, but many of those wells dried up during a recent drought.
A vendor drops off radishes to sell at Central de Abasto, a main wholesale market in Mexico City, Mexico’s capital. A huge portion of the country’s fruits and vegetables are brought and sold here. One 2011 USDA report noted that it handles 50 percent of the country’s food products. It’s one of 60 central wholesale markets nationwide, but Central de Abasto, as the backbone of the country’s traditional market sector, generates more than 10 billion dollars each year.
Babu Lal Buddha, a Buddhist monk, stands in front of a temple in Basantapur Durbar Square in Kathmandu, Nepal’s capital city, atop bricks that toppled during a major earthquake in April 2015. The square contains Hindu temples and historic landmarks, but nothing of Buddhist significance. The monk, who came to Nepal on a pilgrimage from India, stands in a posture of meditation and visitors to the square often photograph him and place money in his bowl, which funds his pilgrimage.
Farmers in Heel-Oya, a village in Sri Lanka’s Kandy District, guide cattle to trample rice stalks in a traditional rice-threshing process. The cattle separates the grain from the stalks. Much of Sri Lanka’s rice, a staple food, is now farmed by machines, but this traditional method is still used in some rare cases.
José Luis Perez Hernandez, 25 (left), and Marcelino Perez Aguilar, 57, retouch the façade of a trajinera, a colorful boat that ferries visitors around Lago de Xochimilco, a lake in Mexico City, Mexico’s capital. The decorative boats are retouched twice each year.
Austin Changwe, a worker from a veterinary clinic in Lusaka, Zambia’s capital city, dips a dog in a pesticide solution during a vaccination and pest-control exercise in Woodlands, a Lusaka suburb. The local veterinary clinic has been educating residents on the importance of vaccination and pest control ahead of the World Rabies Day on Sept. 28.
Carefully stacked produce awaits buyers in Kamanyola, a village near Goma, the capital of Democratic Republic of Congo’s North Kivu province. Fruits and vegetables are cheap here, so the market attracts customers even from neighboring Rwanda. Here, a pot of tomatoes sells for 500 Congolese francs (about 50 cents).
Indigenous people from Argentina’s Jujuy province in northern Argentina, along with others, make offerings to Pachamama, which in the local indigenous language means "Mother Earth." The event, held on Aug. 27 in Buenos Aires, gathered the city’s residents and some officials with indigenous people to ask for the country’s good health, a blessing of natural resources, work, and peace and unity among Argentines.
Blandine, 8, lugs a water jug near a tap in Mugunga, a refugee settlement near Goma in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Clean water is hard to find in the area, and water shortages are common, especially during the dry season.
Cecilia Amma, 50, harvests tea leaves at a private tea estate in Kotagiri, Nilgiris, a district in India’s southern Tamil Nadu state. “We are the last of the tea pluckers,” Amma says, noting that her community’s children are in school to pursue professional careers. Amma says she lived in Sri Lanka before she was repatriated to India under the Sirima-Shastri pact, a 1964 agreement between Sri Lanka and India that granted Indian citizenship to people of Indian descent in Sri Lanka.
Muzaffar Ahmad, 11, guides bulls to plow rice fields in the Budgam area of Indian-Administered Kashmir. Some local farmers use tractors, but many people, like Muzaffar, continue to utilize traditional plowing methods.
Fishermen repair their nets on the island of Gihaya in western Rwanda. The island was once a residence of Juvénal Habyarimana, who was Rwanda’s president from the 1970s until the early 1990s. Now, children play football and fishermen work on their nets on the grassland. At nightfall, the fishermen cast their nets into Lake Kivu for small fish known locally as sambaza.
Ranjana Thapa Khadka, 32, on right, loads grass into a Doko carried by Kaushalya Guragai, 39, kneeling on left. The women have, since 2002, been members of a forest committee in the Indreshwor Thalpu Community Forest 1 in Panauti Municipality in Kavrepalanchowk district, commonly known as Kavre, in Nepal. There are nearly 19,000 community forest users groups in Nepal and women have leadership roles in 1,200 of those groups. The groups ensure that local villagers have access to grass, twigs and other forest materials without harming the forests.
A major earthquake in April 2015 destroyed many schools in Nepal. At the Shree Gramanati School in the village of Killa in Kavrepalanchowk (commonly known as Kavre) district, the building hasn’t been rebuilt. Some classrooms, like this one, are without proper walls. Killa and the area around it does not have road access, so some students walk up to three hours to attend school.
Nearly half a million people were displaced in Sri Lanka in this week as flooding and landslides due to a storm that became Tropical Cyclone Roanu, which ripped through Asia’s Bay of Bengal. Rescue efforts were uncoordinated and included many private boats, operated by people who sought to help the many families in need of rescue or supplies. Despite the floodwaters, some families remained in the upper levels of their home to guard against looters.
Neel Maharjan, 44, left, with her 65-year-old brother-in-law, Tare Mam Maharjan, salvages bricks from her home in Khokana, about 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) from Nepal’s capital Kathmandu. The home was destroyed in the April 2015 earthquake. Neel Maharjan says she waited more than 10 months after the earthquake to salvage building materials because she believed the house would eventually completely collapse, making it easier to gather bricks and wood. She hopes to receive a government grant to rebuild her home. Until then, she’ll continue to live in a temporary shelter.