Plantain Farming Business: How To Start a Plantain Plantation
When listing ten top profitable farm businesses to venture into, plantain farming must for sure be part of it. I know you might be thinking how plantain farming can make you millions yearly. Agricultural business is a goldmine and its reward is beyond imaginable. I have seen results and that is why I will be taking you by the hand and show you how you can make serious money with plantain farming.
Have it in mind that the plantain that you eat almost every day, fetch millions of dollars into the pocket of few farmers. Today, only few farmers plant and grow plantain in Africa and this makes the demand high and profitable.
Starting a Plantain Plantation
The first thing you should be considering is the right climatic condition of your area. Plantain cannot do well in an environment that is too hot or too cold. The best climatic environment for plantain range from 26-30 degree Celsius.
The best place for planting plantain is a rich and fertilized soil. Anyway the best places for growing plantain are Osun, Ekiti, Delta, Rivers, Ogun state etc.
Plantains are grown through sucker. Choose suckers that are strong and active. When transplanting suckers, make sure you get as much corm and root as possible and plant them.
Let the spacing be between two to five meters. At the early stage of planting, keep them moist but not too wet because they don't have leaves to evaporate the water.
As the plantain grows, it is important you also sprinkle fertilizers once in a while and but mostly throwing the plantain dead leaves back into the plant is enough to sustain the rich quality of the soil.
For example, you plant 1,000 suckers of plantain on an hectare of land. In your first harvest, you will get back your money and also make good profit.
Four month later, you will come back to the same plot of land and still harvest more.
Cost of Starting a Plantain Farm
How much is needed? Starting a plantain farming business does not cost much. Cost of starting production depends greatly on the average dimension of your farmland.
What you first need is a hectare of farmland, cost of labour to clear the farmland and the purchase of suckers which can cost up to N450, 000 depending on the community or state.
But if you already have a farmland almost a hectare, you're half way into the business. The only thing you will then be thinking about is how to get the plantain suckers.
The joy about plantain farming is that you don't need to buy suckers and plant again unless you want to start planting in another fresh land because once you plant the first sucker, that one sucker can keep producing for the next 25years or more if you will properly maintain the farmland.
In plantain farming, one can make as much as N150, 000 per hectare on a yearly basis. You can continue to make this over and over again for many years if you maintain the farm properly.
Let say you planted 500 suckers and you sell a bunch for N1000 at maturity. That's N500, 000 yearly. And the good side of it is that, you must have every nine months. The same sucker will continue to grow and multiply itself for many years before the land loses its fertility.
Possible Problems and Challenges in Plantain Farming
There are some major challenges involve in plantain farming. But it all circles around the diseases in plantain. If these plantains are not being taken care of by the farmer, diseases may affect the plantain leading to poor harvest.
Disease like Eelworm which attack the roots thereby creating galls. Another attack is also caused by nematodes and borers which make plantains to dry off.
The farmer can control these soil pests by applying nematicides to the soil twice a year. The best time is April and September.
Also, don't forget regular maintenance is necessary for success in this farming business. Transporting farm inputs to and farm produce from the farm to the market. And the labour factor. This is also inside maintenance and transportation.
You should not let these problems stop you from venturing into this business if you really desire it.
Plantain business remains one of the best agricultural businesses in Nigeria only if you understand how it works.
Let me hear your thought about this business in the comment box. Thank you!
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