Farm­ers start preps for sum­mer crop­ping

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Business - Elita Chik­wati Harare Bureau

FARM­ERS have started preparations for the 2016/17 sum­mer crop­ping sea­son with most of them call­ing for small-scale ir­ri­ga­tion equip­ment to sup­ple­ment rain­fall.

Some farm­ers ex­hibit­ing at the Harare Agri­cul­tural Show said they were aware of cli­mate change and its ef­fects and there­fore, were will­ing to ven­ture into ir­ri­ga­tion to pro­duce high yields even un­der drought con­di­tions.

They said they had wa­ter sources at their farming ar­eas but did not have the equip­ment to fully ir­ri­gate.

Kadoma farmer Mrs Es­ket Size said she could reg­is­ter high prof­its if she starts us­ing ir­ri­ga­tion.

“Sup­pli­ers can come to us and of­fer loans with af­ford­able terms and in­ter­est rates. Drip ir­ri­ga­tion is ideal and my wish is to ven­ture into win­ter maize pro­duc­tion. With ir­ri­ga­tion, one is guar­an­teed of high prof­its and this makes it easy to hire labour.

“I have started land preparations and am wait­ing for the rain­fall up­date from the ex­perts.

“Farm­ers are hope­ful and they do not wait for the rain­fall up­date to start pre­par­ing or stop farming be­cause of a pre­dic­tion of a drought,” she said.

Seke farmer Mrs Rudo Chinem­bera said she has started land preparations.

“Ap­pli­ca­tion of ma­nure in the fields is un­der­way although I am yet to buy seed. The chal­lenge we are fac­ing is that some­times we get pay­ments for our pro­duce late and we will not be able to carry out land preparations timely. We rely on hir­ing trac­tors and we pay cash up front and this may af­fect our preparations, she said.

Glen­dale farmer Mrs Mary Map­fi­rakupa said farming op­er­a­tions were be­ing ham­pered by cli­mate change.

She said cli­mate change had been brought by the ero­sion of in­dige­nous cul­ture due to west­ern­i­sa­tion.

“We now have con­sec­u­tive droughts and we are get­ting low yields. It is be­cause of in­cest, not obey­ing im­por­tant days like izilo. “We should go back to our cul­ture and start per­form­ing rain mak­ing cer­e­monies,” she said.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Zimbabwe

© PressReader. All rights reserved.