Melon (egusi) farming is fast enriching farmers in Nigeria and you shouldn’t be left behind on this opportunity. If you are confused on which agribusiness to venture into, then consider melon (egusi) farming in Nigeria. In Nigeria, the melon is known by different local names by the different ethnic groups. In Yoruba, it is called efo elegusi, the Igbo call it egusi, while the Hausa people call it miyan gushi.
This only informs you that melon is widely accepted in Nigeria, thus making melon (egusi) farming very profitable. Aside from using it to make soup, the nutritional benefits are just so many. One good thing about melon (egusi) farming is that you can grow it easily with very little stress. Unlike other crops in Nigeria, it will interest you to know that melon is very resistant to most pests and diseases.
The main objective of this article is to give you all the information you need to start a successful melon (egusi) farming business in Nigeria. In this article, you will be provided with quality information regarding:
- Melon yield per hectare in Nigeria
- The husbandry of melon farming
- How to plant melon
- The production of melon per hectare
These and many more information will be availed to you in the course of this article. All you need to do is just relax and keep reading for I know you will be glad you did.
How Profitable Is Melon (Egusi) Farming In Nigeria?
Are still in doubt of the profitability of melon farming in Nigeria? If your answer is yes, then let us look into the profitability of melon (egusi) farming proper. Just as I mentioned earlier, it is widely accepted in Nigeria, Africa, and the world in general. If it is generally accepted, then you should know that the market is large.
Aside from using the melon to make soup, you can also extract oil from the seed. You can use the oil for cooking or salad oil, it is all about your choice. There is also the opportunity for you to export the seeds to Europe as it is processed into vegetable oil. You can see now that there is money to be made from melon (egusi) farming in Nigeria. All that is required is your ability to get the right information.
This right information is what this article will supply you with. If you are interested in venturing into melon (egusi) farming in Nigeria, here are the guidelines that you need.
The Guidelines To Starting Melon (Egusi) Farming In Nigeria
Have a good melon (egusi) farming business plan
For you to stand a chance at success in your melon (egusi) farming business, a business plan is very important. You need this business plan, especially when you are starting a commercial melon farming business. The business plan can be neglected if you are just cultivating melon for your personal consumption.
Aside from being your guide, the melon (egusi) farming business plan also helps you to access government agricultural loans. It can also assist you in attracting investors to your farming business in Nigeria.
Land selection and preparation
The melon seeds thrive very in soft and fertile soils. You must choose farmland that has good soil fertility and good water retention capacity. After you have selected your farmland, the next step is to plow or till the ground in preparation for planting. At this point, you can also add compost manure to the farmland to improve your melon yield per hectare.
How to plant your melon
The planting time for melon is usually between the months of April and June. You should raise some beds on which to plant your melon seeds. Avoid cultivation your melon in an open field, rather in places that they will be sheltered by some trees. While planting, it is recommended that you plant at least 3 seeds in a hole and a maximum of 5 seeds.
You should have a spacing of about 20 inches between the planting holes. Once the seeds start growing into vines, you should support the vines with stakes. It will interest you to know that the maturity time for melon is maximum of 7 months. Just a single melon stem can yield up to 10 heads, sometimes 15 depending on the variety and soil quality.
You can also carry out your melon (egusi) farming with other crops like maize or yam. After planting your melon seeds, make sure to water them on regular basis. It is expected the melon seeds germinate within a maximum period of a week.
How to harvest your melon
Melon is usually harvested between the months of October and December. After harvesting your melon gourds, the seeds can be stored as long as you want. You just have to be aware that the seeds are prone to fungal disease causing agents like Penicillium and Aspergillus species.
The melon is harvested once the stems dry or the melon gourds or fruit turns from green to yellowish-white in color. After harvesting your melon gourds, you break it open and leave for a maximum of 2 weeks to decompose. After this decomposition, you can start collecting your melons seeds.
Once you are done with collecting your melon seeds, you can then take them to the market for sale. As explained earlier, melon (egusi) farming business have a readily available market all around Nigeria. Why not consider this business today and join the happy Nigerian farmers that melon (egusi) farming business has made millionaires.