You need to Know this before Getting into Potato Farming for Business This Winter.

You need to Know this before Getting into Potato Farming for Business This Winter.

Growing potatoes during Zimbabwean winter:

Potato prices at their highest soon after winter, these would have been farmers who have grown the crop successfully through winter, in this article we look at some of the methods small scale farmers can use to protect their crops from frost:

In general, most frost protection is for sensitive horticultural crops, which are grown in the Zimbabwean winter. It is important for farmers in frost-risk areas in Zimbabwe to listen to the weather forecasts and to take precautions. Most growers already know the tentative dates that frost is common in their own areas. However, the meteorological service offers helpful frost prediction and forecasting information. Those methods that involve a lot of investment and require electricity are mainly practised on large commercial farms.

Small farmers practice less expensive protection methods such as:

Site selection of frost-free sites on slopes.

Selection of tolerant cultivars ( these are your dual and processing varieties).

Avoidance of sensitive stages during frost periods.

Winter soil compacting.

Production in protected environments – greenhouses.

Physical barriers.

Cover crop with grass, hessian sacks or paper in the evening.

Sprinkler irrigation.

Burning tyres, grass and cow dung upwind early in the morning.

Fans and other wind-making machines.

Forced harvesting.

Bottles filled with water and placed close to a plant.

End of June – July is when we normally have lower temperatures with minimums of between 0°C and 5°C and ground frost being more pronounced in the most prone areas such as Nyanga, Marondera, Chivhu, Henderson, Gweru and Matobo

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