Do you intend starting a cucumber farming in Nigeria?
This write up contains all you need to know about cucumbers and how you can start you can start the business.
Apart from the fact that cucumber is widely consumed which is one reason that may encourage anyone that desire farming.
It may also interest you to know that this fruit called cucumber is highly nutritious and has a lot of health benefits attached to it. Let’s take a look at some of its health benefits.
Steps in Starting Cucumber Farming in Nigeria
- Choose Seed Specie
- Business Plan
- Land Preparation
1.) Cucumbers are planted using seeds.
Also note that cucumber seed varies.
You have to be sure of the kind of cucumber seed you want to plant.
There are so many varieties of cucumber and each of them give different results, some of them are enlisted here.
1.) Sweet Success Cucumber Seeds – As the name suggests, its very sweet and tastes cucumber. It has few seeds in it, almost seedless up to 12-14inch. No pollination is needed.
2.) Home Made Pickles Cucumber Seeds – These seeds are solid and originally grown. It also has sweet taste.
3.) Straight Eight Cucumber Seeds – It is 8inches long. Heavy and has few seeds in it. It is originally grown.
4.) Martini Cucumber Seeds – This seed produces cucumber with creamy white colour, it is almost seedless and has an outstanding flavor.
5.) Tasty Green Cucumber Seeds – This cucumber emerges very green with no bitterness.
So above are some kind of cucumber seeds among others of course they are many more of them. However you have to know their seeds and their product result.
2.) Business Plan
You would be wondering what you could possibly need a business plan for, in a business like this.
Although many people succeeded in cucumber farming, however, it is very necessary you have a business plan.
This business plan helps you to keep track of your business. It also guides you against unnecessary spending and helps you keep the rules and regulation of cucumbers.
Your farm needs managed properly. Construct a business plan for your cucumber farming.
3.) Location or Site Selection
Cucumbers can be grown in any location, no matter where you stay.
You can grow your cucumber in your compound, anywhere at all.
But we have to consider the kind of soil appropriate for planting cucumbers irrespective of the location.
The soil appropriate for planting cucumbers must be loamy or clay soil.
Your cucumbers should also be planted where they have access to adequate water and sunlight.
Sunlight is very important is growing cucumbers.
4.) Land Preparation
The size of your farm depends on what you want to do. But since you are just starting a small portion of land will be just fine.
Else, the larger your farm, the greater your yield. After getting your portion of land, the land needs to be cleared.
Depending on how bushy the land is, you will need to uproot weeds and cut down trees. The land must be proper cleared.
Pesticides or herbicides should not be used on the farm as the chemicals can affect the cucumbers and reduce the quality of the soil.
Also bush burning should not be done widely on the farm. But burning disrupt the activities of Nitrogen Micro organisms which plays a very important role in the soil.
If you are planning to use bulldozer because of the size of your farm, do make sure that the topmost layer of the soil is not scooped away because it contains nutrients.
After clearing the farm, you start making your ridges. Ridges can be short or long, whichever one you choose to do, ensure your ridges are made well because cucumber do well in a loose soil.
5.) Use of Manure
You will also need manures for your farm. This manure can be done while making your ridges or after making your ridges. Manures can be chicken waste, wood ash, weeds, pig waste.
Whichever one you intend to use make sure you apply them or pour them on the farm before planting your seeds.
Also, it is very important that you take note against the use of NPK 15:10:10 to boost your soil.
Remember that cucumber is 95% water, it has the capacity of retaining any chemical used in growing it.
So the use of this chemical will only produce harmful fruits. So always use organic manure.
Unless your land or soil is moist while ploughing, it will be best you wet the soli before planting your seed.
To irrigate your farm means to keep your soil wet.
Depending on the weather condition at that moment, you will need to irrigate your farm atleast five times in a week so that the cucumber can grow and survive if the weather in your location is not favourable to your cucumber, you may consider a borehole or use the water cans to irrigate your land every morning.
If you have a borehole already you can attach a pipe or hose to it. Irrigations are done at the early hours of the day.
Cucumbers requires plenty of water regularly, unless for rainfall, ensure you wet your farm.
After making sure that your farm has adequate water you start planting your seeds.
These seeds are planted by putting or inserting the seeds with tips of your finger into the ridges.
When putting the seeds into the ridges, you do not necessary to dig deep into the ridge. When you must put the seed, you cover up the opening.
If your ridges are long, then you will have to measure your distance by a foot. How do I mean?
When you must have inserted the first seed into the ridge, move distance of just one foot and put another seed, this spacing allows the plant to grow comfortably.
However, if your ridges are short ones, then you will only need one seed for one ridge and so on.
Also note that you place the seed with the pointed side face up.
8.) Post Planting
Stacking is very important to cucumbers because of their nature.
Cucumbers are climbers by nature and will definitely need support for the growth.
This should be done with a space of two (2) weeks when the plants starts growing and getting longer.
You can stake them using bamboo beams. The bamboos should be placed closely to the cucumbers.
The long stems are then connected to the bamboo, it enable a comfortable growth and healthy production.
If the cucumbers are not supported and allowed to just grow on the ground, the cucumbers will not produce well.
Their colours will turn yellow or white. But staking helps to retain its green colour. Mulching is also necessary.
It helps to reduce the growth of weeds. It also reduces the quantity of fertilizer to be used in the farm.
So as soon as the seeds start sprouting up, you mulch if possible. Dark mulch is very good.
Mulch helps to keep the soil warm and moist.
Cucumbers are harvested when they are matured. Cucumbers can produce more than one fruit that is why you have to be careful when harvesting.
If you harvest your fruit by plucking it directly from the nodes, it will definitely not yield another fruit.
So when plucking, you leave out atlest ½ inch strand. You also have to note that you are to start harvesting your cucumber from the bottom as the fruit matures, anyone that is not yet matured should not be harvested.
You should carefully pluck out the fruit as to avoid injuries on the fruit or internal breakage.
After you have harvested your fruits carefully, place them in a big bowel and wash off dirt stains on the fruit after which you take them to the market.
Truth is that, you ought to have started marketing your product even before they are ready; you don’t have to wait till your cucumbers before you starting telling people about it.
However, because cucumbers are widely consumed, harvesting your product wouldn’t be much of a problem.
Just ensure that after harvesting, your products get to the market on time.
Benefits Of Eating Cucumber
- It reduces the risk of cancer in the body. Because of the presence of antioxidants in cucumber, this fruit can help boost your immune system and reduces the risk of cancer in the blood cells.
- It prevents mouth odour as it refreshes your breath
- It can also be referred anti-aging fruit as it protects the skin against aging
- It also protects the brain against diseases associated with memory loss
- It eases digestion; yes cucumber is very good for easy digestion. Cucumber is 95% water and also contains fibers, this fiber and water allows the quick movement of food to the digestive system.
- As regard losing weight, you can consider going for cucumber
- This vegetable fruit is also important and useful for hypertensive patient because it contains potassium
- It also helps to boost your energy levels. Vitamin B1, B5, B7 are also contained in cucumber which helps increase your energy level.
- It also helps in the management of stress
- Cucumber contains flavonoids and tannis. This component in cucumber helps in pain relieve
- Cucumber has been used as face mask. When sliced and placed on either eye, it helps reduce under eye bags and puffiness. Here are the benefits of cucumber.
Having listed the steps to take in starting your own business in cucumber farming in Nigeria, i will like to also say that you can always make use of organic or homemade pesticide or insecticide to avoid pests and insects disrupting the growth of your cucumber.
This homemade pesticide could be achieved by meeting experts in cucumber farming.
This business though not as lucrative as say turkey farming, you can easily make decent amount of money from it.
I hope you found this article interesting.
Cucumber farming is less stressful if you follow the steps, you will also get a good result of healthy and greenish fruits.