Pepper Farming in Nigeria: Beginner’s Guide

Have you ever thought of diving into pepper farming in Nigeria? Get practicable ways to activate your thoughts into cash by starting a profitable pepper farm.
Pepper Farming in Nigeria has been one of the Agribusinesses coming into a more explorable aspect of spices and vegetable farming. Its culinary and overall health benefits have made it a must-included spices that accompany everyone’s daily meal globally. Hence, there is a need to meet its diverse target of inclusion across all mixes by cultivating close to abundance in different parts of the world.

In Nigeria, pepper cultivation is mostly akin to the Northern part due to the belief that this area has the best composition of soil to grow it, but in recent times, its cultivation has developed to any part of the country and it can be transported across different regions, states, cities, and villages across the country. Therefore, there is a bigger opportunity from farming to sales and transportation to co-create abundance. As an individual, you can man any of the supply chains – from on-site buying of harvested pepper and transportation to sales point, to seedling raising and sales, to the biggest part of the chain, which is marketing.
Optimal profitability in pepper farming requires a profound knowledge of agricultural technologies and best practices by the intending farmer. Here are the practicable information needed to make a huge profit in Pepper Farming in Nigeria.

Varieties of Pepper

There are about four common varieties of pepper in Nigeria – Chilli (Ata ijosi), Habanero (Atarodo), Sweet pepper (Tatashe) and cayenne (Shombo). The highest-priced among the four is sweet pepper because of its uniqueness in taste and usefulness for meal decoration. To add, it is not pepperish which makes most of the Easterners and many people around the country prefer it. Habanero (atarodo) is the most utilized. However, all these varieties are needed for its specific culinary functions.
Seed selection is based on the climatic conditions and type of diseases and pests prevalent in the farm location. The most reliable seed is the Hybrid Pepper Seed with its high-yielding and disease-resistant qualities. Quality seed coupled with good agricultural practices on an acre of land can yield 3-5 tonnes of pepper.
Soil Requirement
It requires a warm climate and well-drained sandy-loamy soil. Optimum soil moisture and pH. It does not grow well on alkaline soil.
Land Acquisition and Preparation
To cut costs, you may lease the farmland if you do not have an inherited or bought farmland. Greenhouse technology works greatly for Pepper farming, however, some combinations of these practices are capable of producing comparable results to this technology.
Make sure you have a source of water for your farmland. To work smarter, Drip Irrigation is recommended. Weeding, burning, and ploughing can be done on the farmland. Soil fertility can be increased using organic manure; poultry faeces, pig faeces, or fertilizer. Spread on the farmland for seven (7) days before making beds.
Seedling Production and Transplanting
Carve out about 100cm x 100cm with an inter-row space of 70cm from the big lot of fertile farmland for nursery beds. Fumigate the nursery with chemicals to kill pests, weeds, and diseases that might subsequently interfere with the plant. Water the soil and cover the soil with net or palm fronds to slow down evaporation. Leave for 8-10 days before broadcasting seed on the bed. Water the bed for some hours before the seed broadcasts to soften the bed. Thin the seedlings by 4 x 4cm apart after twenty days of seed broadcast. There should be an elevated net or palm frond shade for about 45 days to protect it from hot sun and heavy downpours which might affect yield. Remove the shade after these stated days. Water the seedlings regularly in the cool period of the day but avoid excess water. Similarly, water the bed on the day you’d transplant to maintain the lively appearance of the seedling and to ease uprooting. Make sure the seedlings are hardened before transplanting. The seedling can maintain 50-60cm row spacing on the farmland.

Disease and Pest Control of pepper

During the nursery stage and on the farmland, fungicides, and pesticides should be sprayed regularly to prevent diseases and pests and ensure maximum yield.
Weeding and Fertilizer Application
Weeding can be done thrice before harvest. Fertilizer; NPK can be applied 2 weeks after transplanting. The other application should be during the early stage of flowering.

Harvest and Profitability of pepper farming.

The good news about pepper farming is it’s multiple and continuous harvests. Pepper matures within 3-5 months depending on variety, and harvesting can last up to 3 months. Chilli plants can live and bear fruit for 2-3years. So, it has a high Return on Investment. This can be your gold.

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