5 Capsicum Farming Tips that Help Transform Pilipili Hoho Farming in to a Profitable Business
If you are one of the farmers interested in growing capsicums, here are the best capsicums farming tips that will allow you realize maximum profits for your efforts. Capsicums, also referred to as bell peppers (local name “pilipili hoho”), are members of the nightshade family Solanaceae. They are a very hardy plant species. Though the plant needs proper care, it is hardly affected by diseases or pests.
Nursery Planting Tips for Pilipili Hoho
You can choose to make sunken or raised nurseries. A majority of the farmers prefer the lowered ones because they retain more water than the raised ones. The seeds take two or three weeks to germinate after sowing. The capsicum seedlings should then be transplanted after six weeks.
Add a small amount of dry goat or cow manure when making the nursery and mix it well with soil. It is of more advantage to use a mixture of cow and goat manure. Addition of manure in the nursery ensures a healthy and vigorous seedling resulting into a healthy capsicum even after transplantation.
In a capsicum nursery, provide a spacing of about 1.5 inches between the rows. This spacing ensures that enough spaces are left for spraying and watering. When spraying during freezing mornings, the nursery should be sprayed with a mildew preventive herbicide. You should not spray any other chemical on the nursery because the seedlings are still too weak to withstand any strong sprays of fertilizers.
It’s advisable to transplant capsicum during the evenings or during the day when it is not very hot. Harden the seedlings a day before transplanting by reducing the frequency of watering. Wet the nursery on the day of transplanting to enable easy uprooting of the seedlings while avoiding root damages. Water or irrigate the land before planting to facilitate easy planting.
On the farm field, planting is done by pressing the seedling down on the wet furrows to about one inch. Plant the seedling on each side of the furrow to utilize the space well. To ensure maximum uptake of irrigated water, plant the seedlings close to the furrow floor.
How to Properly Manage Capsicum
Among the most important capsicum farming tips in Kenya is learning how to manage your crop well. Plant management activities include mulching and staking, among others. Mulching is vital as it chokes the weeds and helps to reduce loss of moisture. Staking keeps the plant upright especially when the capsicum becomes too heavy due to fruits production. Staking also keeps the fruits off the ground.
Tips While Controlling Diseases and Pests
The following is a list of few but common diseases that affect capsicum:
- Early or late blight – Causes leaf folding.
- Attacks from spider mites- They are small red mites. Preventing or curing this attack requires continuous spray of insecticides.
- Thrips attack- You should hunt for them weekly on the inside of a flower.
- Attack by white flies- They can be sighted early in the morning by just tapping on the crops. They, however, have little if any effect on the plant.
Capsicum becomes loaded with fruits when mature. Pick your fruits and keep them in a shade and then sort according to marketing needs. Keep off direct sunlight to protect the fruits from sunburns that may make you end up with many rejects.
Application of the above capsicum farming tips will cost you nothing yet the benefits you get out of them are very worthy. Consider applying them from today.
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