Agriculture has recently become the choice of most people seeking financial progress. If you have the correct information, this business activity can be profitable. Similarly, strawberry farming has also entered the work list of the best agricultural activities. However, the good news is that Strawberry' s promise is true, as long as you follow the tips below. You may have participated in venture capital that can generate for you Ksh100, 000 per month. After all, other strawberry growers are doing the same thing.
Strawberry planting technology
Strawberries can be grown almost anywhere in Kenya, as long as there is a continuous supply of water, the temperature is not less than 10 degrees and not more than 30 degrees. Any initial project for growing strawberries requires proper soil preparation. If you are a farmer who has just arrived in this city, then a quarter of an acre is enough to make a profit of 100, 000 shillings.
Even in urban areas where land is scarce, commercial cultivation of strawberries at this time can be easily achieved. The secret is to be smart, focus and focus on production, because the market is always available and needs are not being met.
How to grow strawberries
Strawberries grow well at altitudes between 1250 and 2200 meters. They need 1200 mm of uniform rain. Less than this will require irrigation at a rate of 25 mm per week. Strawberry plants are not drought tolerant. Drip irrigation increases yield, improves berry size and appearance, and prolongs the harvest period.
Strawberries grow in a variety of well- drained soils, although deep, sandy soils rich in humus are ideal. Soil drainage should be sufficient to keep the water level at least 80 to 100 cm below the soil surface. Poor drainage weakens the bur and makes it easily diseased. The pH range of the soil should be between 5. 5 and 6. 5. Saline soil should be avoided.
Harvest 70 days mature. Generally, the fruit can be harvested 4- 6 weeks after flowering, and only fully ripe (red) berries can be picked because they will not ripen after harvest.
It can take up to 3 weeks to produce numerous berries, depending on the variety and the handling practices used. For example, if managed properly, 1/8 of the field can produce 30 to 50 kg of strawberries per week.
Strawberries are fragile and easily scratched or damaged, so they must be handled with care, for example, when picked from strawberry plants.
Strawberries should be picked in the morning when they are fresh and dry, because when they are wet, they will quickly become moldy. Soon after harvest, the berries should be stored unwashed in a cool and dry place, such as a refrigerator, where they can be stored for 5 to 7 days.
Harvested strawberries can also be dried, frozen or made into jams or preserves.
How To control Pest And Diseases
Strawberry weevil: Infestation causes holes in flowers and petals. The stem is chewed or cut, passing through
Tarnished plant insects- these insects pierce the plant tissue and suck the juice, causing the tissue to deform and the leaves to drop prematurely. Severely infested leaves will turn green. They also secrete honeydew, which promotes the development of soot and attracts other insects.
Strawberry Thrips: Adults and nymphs feed on the leaves, more preferably the flowers, sucking the juice to cause damage, which can result in flower damage or wilting, resulting in shrunken or deformed fruits.
Nematodes: Plants affected by nematodes are stunted, old leaves die, and runners are rarely produced. The roots can be short, thick and swollen.
Leaf blight: It occurs on older strawberry leaves. Large round to oval, reddish- purple spots on leaves. As the infection progresses, they form brown centers bordered by purple areas. The growth of a black fungus can be seen in the center of the spot. Diseases can also develop in corridors of susceptible species.
Symptoms of leaf blight disease begin with round purple spots on the upper surface of the leaves. As the infection continues, the center of the spot becomes tan or gray, then almost white with a purple border. The disease can affect immature petioles, fruit stems, runners and the tops of susceptible varieties.
Fugue: The symptoms are so different that it is not easy to be confused with other symptoms of fruit rot. The color of the infected ripe berries remained unchanged at first, but turned light brown. The berries become mushy and watery, and are crushed by the out flowing juice hydraulically, hence the name Shenyou. Rotten fruits, especially canned fruits, will soon be covered with white fluffy cotton- like fungi with black spore- forming structures.
Leaf spot disease: The infection is characterized by purple to brown spots, and large necrotic spots will appear in the later stages. These spots usually appear at the ends of the leaflets and are wedge- shaped. This fungus can also attack the stem, cap, and fruit.
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