Ugu farming In Nigeria is an important economic agribusiness that is profitable due to its edible leaves, popularity, acceptance and health benefits. Ugu also known as fluted pumpkin, scientific name: Telfairia
Occidentalis. The plant is grown by individuals mostly farmers in the West African region.
Ugu farming in Nigeria is among the small scale agribusiness which is becoming more and more popular, a lot of Nigerians are willing to grow Ugu in order to consume or to sell it for profit. And it is not capital intensive, it can be grown in your backyard. For one to start up an Ugu farming the person need to source for knowledge to start. Ugu farming can be done at any point in time so far there is a proper source of irrigation.
HEALTH BENEFITS OF UGU
Ugu leaves (fluted pumpkin) leaves is one of those plants that secretly carry some unbelievable health benefits such as; Ugu leave can be used as an ingredient for herbal medicines. It helps to treat malaria, anaemia and sudden attack of convulsion. It has other health benefits too, like -Liver-protection; Lactating properties, excellent for nursing mothers; Boosts the immune system; It increases fertility.
Ugu leaves can be consumed raw or used for cooking. The seed is edible, as it can be used as snacks by roasting or boiling it.
How to start Ugu farming in Nigeria
GET A LAND
It is advisable that the land is close to your resident for easy monitoring. Try to know if the land is fertile, the size is determined by how small or large you want the farmland to be and then clear the land. And the best soil type is loamy.
SOURCE FOR SEED
Before you think of starting ugu farming make sure you go for viable ugu seed. Make sure you source it from a disease-free pods, for proper development and growth of the seed.
The best soil for ugu farming is loamy soil.
After the land have been secured land preparation is important, you can hire labourers depending on the size of the land to till it and ease up the soil for easy permit traction of water to the soil. Consider supplementing the soil with lots of manure. It could be cow dung or poultry waste. The land needs to be ready at least two weeks before planting.
PLANTING OF UGU
Make a bed, remove the seeds from the pod and you have to remove all the juicy parts, allow it to dry before planting. The ideal time for planting is from April and May when rain is just starting for the season or at any time of the year with the help of irrigation. Dig a small hole of about 15cm-25cm deep, with spacing between 5cm. Then plant the seed and close it with soil. I will recommend covering it with grass also. This will reduce transpiration.
However, you should weed whenever you see them sprouting up. Don’t allow your ugu farm to complete or share nutrient with weeds. Weeding the farm is also good so as to reduce pest.
Organic manure or a nitrogenous fertilizer such as Urea and NPK (15:15:15) is the best to be applied on the farm they promote the growth of the leaves likewise the seed yield. This should be done one month when the seed has germinated.
You can start harvesting 30days after planting.
UGU FARMING PDF
This is an Ebook on Ugu farming in Nigeria written to guide new farmers on some agronomic practices to increase yield from Ugu farming through organic means of farming. Also, it is very comprehensive and detailed as it contains all necessary information to aid new farmers plant Ugu without stress and make a huge profit.
The STEP BY STEP PRACTICAL GUIDE TO SUCCESSFUL COMMERCIAL UGU (FLUTED PUMPKIN) FARMING contains information on:
• Seed selection
• Staking concept
• Making organic pesticide
• Preservation and storage techniques
• Choice of fertilizer
• Pre-planting and post planting activities
• Applying fertilizer
• and lots more
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