As indicated by the story from Okonkwo's past, his father, Unoka, sought the Oracle of the Hills and Caves, inquiring as to why he had reaped terrible produces every year disregarding his sacrifices and strict adherence to the planting methods. Amid his story, Chika (the priestess of the Oracle) interjected irately and revealed to him that he hadn't insulted the spirits, however in his laziness, he took the path of least resistance by planting on land whose fertility had been depleted. She instructed him to go home and "work like a man."
In the second story from Okonkwo's past, the youthful Okonkwo was getting ready to plant his first ranch in yams — a man's crop — while his mom and sisters developed ladies' products, things as coco-yams and cassava. Since Okonkwo had gotten nothing from his father, he started his cultivation through 'share-cropping'. To get help in his planting, he visited Nwakibie, an extraordinary man of the clan, symbolized by his three horse shelters, nine spouses, and thirty kids. After the welcome and ceremonies, Okonkwo approached Nwakibie for seed-yams and promised his diligent work in developing and collecting them. As indicated by the share-cropping contract, Okonkwo would return 66% of what he developed to Nwakibie and get just 33% of the harvest for himself. Nwakibie recognized Okonkwo's sincerity and desire and gave Okonkwo double the number of seed-yams he'd sought after.