Feedback: Tips on growing pomegranate fruit

Your questions on farming and agribusiness answered by agricultural experts through: satnation@ke.nationmedia.com

Pomegranates can do well in a wide range of soils but they should be well-drained, deep and rich in organic matter. FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

IN SUMMARY

  • Pomegranates can do well in a wide range of soils but they should be well-drained, deep and rich in organic matter.
  • All the aspects of the business would be captured in a business plan which we can help you come up with.
  • Feed formulation calls for technical and practical guidance to get it right.
  • Practical trainings organised by institutions really add value to farmers in addition to exchange visits.

GROWING BEST POMEGRANATE

This fruit called pomegranate is penetrating the market, especially supermarkets.

I saw it being sold in some supermarkets in Ukunda and Kericho at a good price.

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What are the climatic conditions for it to thrive well? Second, how can I get the seedlings?

Martin

Pomegranate trees will do well in areas with an altitude of 1,800m above sea level.

Hot and dry climate is good during fruit development for faster growth and high yields.

The optimum temperature during fruit development is 36-38°C.

Pomegranates can do well in a wide range of soils but they should be well-drained, deep and rich in organic matter.

Soil pH is 5.5-7.0. Lack of moisture in the soil leads to fruit cracking.

Irrigation is practised during the dry season. You can get seedlings from farmers Wilson Ndungu on 0714080532 or Maina of Eden Villa Farm in Laikipia on 0734585500.

Carol Mutua, Department of Crops, Horticulture and Soils,
Egerton University.

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SOLAR INCUBATOR

I need a solar-powered chicken incubator.

Please inform me of the prices and where I can get it.

Geoffrey Kariuki, Naivasha

One can buy a solar-powered chicken incubator from any one of the following suppliers:

1. Godfrey Ng’ang’a (0721612771) of Kikuyu Town, Kiambu County at an average cost of Sh70,000 for 700-egg capacity among other sizes

2. Livingstone Waithaka of Asia-Quarters Estate, Nyeri for a 70-egg capacity incubator for Sh30,000.

Prof. Daudi M. Nyaanga and Abich O. Otieno, Department of Agricultural Engineering,
Egerton University.

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MOVING TO KUROILER FROM KIENYEJI BIRDS

I am rearing indigenous chickens and I wish to improve to Kienyeji or Kuroiler.

I am also interested in pig rearing. Help me develop a business plan that contains housing plans, disease control and vaccination feeding schedules.

Margaret

A farmer feeds his Kuroiler poultry. Kuroilers are hybrids with the ability to respond well to intensive or semi-intensive systems by attaining market weights of about 2 to 4kg in four months and reach maturity at five months. FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

Your business idea is great bearing in mind that Christmas is nearing.

All the aspects of the business would be captured in a business plan which we can help you come up with.

Our team has specialists in animal production who will help with the housing plan, disease control, vaccination and feeding schedule.

Send an email to dickson@agfreshsupplies.com for further engagement.

Dickson Otieno,
Department of Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness Management, Egerton University.

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MATERIALS ON BUSINESS PLAN

I would be glad if I get materials on business plan to start a pig farm. I have six already.

Silas

We are in a position to offer assistance with this task but this is intensive and cannot fit here.

Kindly send me a mail on diskson@agfreshsupplies.com.

Dickson Otieno,
Department of Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness Management, Egerton University.

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FEED FORMULATION, LIGHTING IN POULTRY

I am a Kienyeji improved poultry farmer in Mombasa though I also farm crops in Taveta through irrigation.

My problem is on poultry feeds formulation for both meat and egg birds.

What should I mix and in what ratios?

Two, educate me on light management for improved laying?

Kevin Lesilale

In poultry rearing, feeds account for 60-70 per cent of production costs, leaving farmers looking for alternatives to keep their businesses running.

A good number have resorted to making their own feeds at home, but optimal production still remains an uphill task as a consequence.

Feed formulation calls for technical and practical guidance to get it right.

Technical knowledge involves quality, nutrient and mixing precision as well as the economics while practical is the art.

Please refer to Seeds of Gold article, The ‘A-Z of making your own quality chicken feeds at home to cut costs’ available online.

On the other hand, lighting programme is a key tool in management of layers as it determines productivity.

Poultry feed formulation calls for technical and practical guidance to get it right. FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

As a quick guide, refer to Seeds of Gold section Diary of a Poultry Farmer, the article Light management for layers from week one dated July 29, also available online.

Felix Akatch Opinya,
Department of Animal Sciences, Egerton University.

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POULTRY MENTORSHIP

Please direct me to any poultry farmer who can guide me on how to excel in the business.
Karanja

Successful farm production thrives on getting technical knowhow and practical aspects together.

Practical trainings organised by institutions really add value to farmers in addition to exchange visits.

There are many excellent poultry farmers across the country but I refer you to Dr Subiri Obwogo’s farm.

Write him on bobwogo@hotmail.com.

Felix Akatch Opinya,
Department of Animal Sciences, Egerton University.

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MARADOL PAWPAWS

I would like to plant Maradol pawpaws.

Please educate me on this variety and where I can get it.

Juliana Ndungu

Maradol papaya is a new variety which was introduced by FAO in Kenya.

It is high-yielding, tasty, self-pollinated, early-maturing (takes 11-12 months), and the tree is dwarf making picking of the fruits very easy.

Guiseppe De Bac, a Food Agriculture Organisation project manager showcases Maradol, the new pawpaw variety in West Pokot. FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

It is being grown by farmers in West Pokot.

You can get more information about it from Kalro Marigat through director.ari@kalro.org or 0773479016/7.

Carol Mutua,
Department of Crops, Horticulture and Soils, Egerton University.

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AFRICAN FOXTAIL GRASS SEEDS

Where can I get African foxtail grass seeds for planting? 
Eric 

Please contact Kerio Valley Development Authority on +254 (053) 2063361 or info@kvda.go.ke

Carol Mutua,
Department of Crops, Horticulture and Soils, Egerton University.

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