Watermelon farming business in Nigeria: step-by-step instructions on how to grow watermelon in Nigeria
The watermelon farming business is the cultivation of one of the most nutrient-dense fruits available. This crop, which has been recognized as a fruit, is chock-full of health advantages. It’s high in potassium, calcium, iron, folate, vitamin A and C, and lycopene, among other nutrients. Watermelon farming business in Nigeria.
Watermelon has been connected to a variety of health advantages, including muscle health, eye, skin, and hair care, as well as cancer prevention. Watermelon is incredibly popular not only in Nigeria and Africa, but also around the world, due to its antioxidants and satisfying feel and flavor.
Watermelon is the world’s third most cultivated crop, trailing only potatoes and tomatoes.
WaterMelon Farming business in Nigeria: Step by Step Guide
Watermelon is commonly grown in Northern Nigeria, and it is a popular fruit there. Watermelon from the northern portion of the country is consumed in large numbers in Southern Nigeria.
Water melon, on the other hand, may be grown in any section of the country, and in this post, we’ll walk you through the process of planting water melon in your area.
Watermelon farming business in Nigeria
Choosing a Location
The first step in starting a successful watermelon farm in Nigeria is to find a good area for the fruit’s growth.
Watermelon requires a hot, dry climate, which makes the northern section of the country ideal for watermelon farming.
This does not rule out the possibility of planting it in the south. Watermelon also demands well-drained sandy or loamy soil, as well as exposure to sunlight on the farm.
Watermelon grows well in hot, dry climates, which is why it is extensively grown in the northern section of the country. However, keep in mind that the best place to put this plant isn’t necessarily toward the north. It can be grown anywhere in the United States.
Cultivation normally begins during the rainy season to take advantage of the lower humidity associated with this time of year. In Northern Nigeria, planting begins in February for the early season and February for the late season.
Watermelon may be planted all year in the North as long as there is enough water available through irrigation. Planting in Southern Nigeria begins in February, which is the beginning of the planting season. Read how to use watermelon seeds to remedy low sperm count.
In February or February, there is also a late planting season. Rainfall is quite important for mid-season planting. Planting may be possible during this period if the rains, which are forecast to begin in mid-February, begin substantially sooner.
Type of Soil
The best soil for growing watermelons is either sandy or loamy soil. The farm should be well-lit, and compost or fertilizers in the proper proportions should be given to the soil to increase soil fertility.
Watermelon takes up a lot of room. The plant is a wandering vine that can suffocate anything in its path. Watermelons can be grown on trellis even if they are not climbers. Trellis allows them to get more sunlight and help them grow.
When building or installing the trellis, you’ll need some experience because it needs to be robust enough to hold the weight of the maturing fruit.
Preparing the Land
Before planting, plow the ground. Plant on the same day that you plough. It has been shown that planting in this manner is preferable to waiting until the next day. You must first prepare the land before planting watermelon. Plough the soil and plant on the same day to prepare the ground for planting.
You can, however, wait until the next day if you choose. Watermelons come in a variety of seed kinds, including black diamond, Congo, reddish delicious, and moon & stars.
Before deciding whether to plant, gain knowledge about each of these varieties and their distinct characteristics and requirements. Watermelon is typically planted towards the start of the rainy season or near the end of the rainy season.
Water melon can be grown on a level surface or on ridges. Planting on ridges, on the other hand, is advised.
Also keep in mind that watermelon takes up a lot of room. It’s a ramping vine that may suffocate anything it comes into contact with. Despite the fact that they do not climb, you can groom them to climb on sturdy trellis to improve their access to sun while also saving space.
The depth of the plant hole should be around 30cm. Plant rows should be around 2 meters apart.
Planting the Watermelon
Watermelon may be grown on both level ground and ridges. Cultivating on a ridge or bed is appropriate if the soil is clay. If the soil is loamy, though, you can sow on a flat piece of land. The depth of the plant hole should be around 30 cm.
You can cultivate on ridges when growing in larger quantities. Since the watermelon plant can not thrive in a waterlogged environment, the soil utilized should be adequately drained. Growing your watermelon in a nursery is never a good idea. Watermelon seeds usually sprout in a few days.
Plant sections should be around 2 meters apart, and plant spacing should be about 1 foot apart. Planting the plant in a raised bed allows easy drainage.
In general, the planting method is determined by the variety. If you’re going to plant the Congo or Crimson varieties, ensure the crops are at least 10 feet apart.
You may test the quality of water melon seeds before planting by putting them in a brine solution (3-5 percent ). The ones that should be sown should be able to easily sink to the bowl’s bottom. Furthermore, the leathery seeds must be softened before being sown.
You may also make the crops more pest and disease resistant by drying the seedlings in the sun a week before planting. Prior to planting, humus should be added to the soil.
In general, the planting method is determined by the variety. If you’re going to plant the Congo or Crimson varieties, make sure the crops are at least 10 feet apart. This is preferable to inorganic fertilizer because manure can alter the taste of watermelon and reduce the plant’s disease resistance.
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Watermelon farming business
The plant should be watered once a week till it matures. The dirt can also be mulched. This is significant because watermelon need to get a lot of water to grow properly. Mulch also helps keep weeds at bay. You should also apply organic manure on a regular basis. Inorganic fertilizers can also be used.
The watermelon vine’s tip can be manipulated to grow in the desired direction. You may also assist their growth and enhance their exposure to sunlight by using a trellis. Water melon growth is frequently hampered by an insect known as the leaf-eating beetle, which attacks the leaves.
By optimizing the plant’s soil conditions, you can reduce the attack on the water melon leaves. In this instance, the water melon plant will develop quickly enough to counteract the insects’ effects.
Mildew is a fungus that attacks the plant’s leaves and causes disease infestation. You can avoid this disease by not allowing the water melon’s leaves to become moist enough to induce mildew.
This can be accomplished by avoiding excessive watering. You must cultivate your crop once it has been planted in order to obtain the most economic value out of it. The first point to remember is that mulching is important because it keeps weeds at bay and keeps the soil moist.
Watering is also crucial. Once a week until the crop matures, repeat this process. When necessary, you should also add manure or inorganic fertilizer.
While you’re doing all of the above, keep an eye out for pests and diseases, as they can wipe out your entire investment. Watermelon takes roughly three months to mature and harvest. When the tendrils are dry and flailing the fruit produces a dull sound.
Trim the stems near to the fruits using a sharp knife if they are confirmed to be suitable for harvest.
Water melon matures in three months and is ready to be harvested. As a result, you can plant up to three times every year. When the watermelon is totally ripe, it’s time to harvest it.
The dryness of the tendrils, as well as a dull sound while fluttering the fruit, are symptoms of ripening. When you exert pressure on the watermelon at this point, you should hear a crackling around the rind.
Another technique to tell if it’s time to harvest the melon is to look at the bottom of it. This section, which is nearest to the soil, should have become a bright yellow color as a result of the exposure to the sun.
In addition, the hue at the top is crucial. There is frequently a contrast between the stripes as the watermelon ripens. Close to the fruit, cut the stems with a sharp knife. Watermelon can last up to ten days, but once cut, it only lasts around four days.
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To be able to send your goods to precise distribution points, you should have identified your target market before establishing your farm. This is done to ensure that your produce does not spend too much time on the farm before being delivered to your intended clients.
Watermelon is a perishable item, so keep in mind that once harvested, it will only last a few days. With this in consideration, you should choose a buyer that is local to your site or who can get the items before they spoil.
We hope you find this guide useful.