Hyacinth Futures by Oyugi Allela

A material driven research through design project that responds to the urgency associated with over-consumption of natural ecosystems and increased pollution of land and water resources by developing a new circular material invention from perennial aquatic weed, water hyacinth -an allien species which carpets Lake Victoria, Africa’s largest fresh water body – a threat to local biodiversity, hub for plastic pollutants on the lake and an inhibitor of socio-economic activities such as irrigation and fishing.

The resultant material is 100% plant-based MDF and concrete alternative which re-imagines the potential of new material resources within a cradle-“from a plant out of place” to a resource that embodies the restorative richness found in nature, is chemical free and can be thrown into the soil to decompose without the guilt of outgassing harmful matter

Oyugi Allela is an alumni of University of Edinburgh (Masters) and University of Nairobi (Bachelors) where she specialized in Product Design.