Agri-business: The best way to grow bananas in Uganda
Experts have urged banana farmers to always think about the fertility of their land and the type of banana structure grown if they hope to increase their productivity.
Successful banana farming begins with the best choice of location for growing the crop, says Richard Kasozi, farmer with two and a half acres of the plant in Matugga, Wakiso district.
Kasozi oversees 550 plantations. He decided to focus on growing only three types of banana cropping: Mbwazirume, Kisansa and Kibuuzi.
He explains his decision, “I have maintained the old types of structures in my farm because they are resistant to diseases and grow in any type of land as long as you maintain the fertility of the land.”
His process is to add one wheel barrow of manure in three long fit whole with a spacing of four metres, leaving the manure to process for two months for proper yields. This system is called “Endu” or “Nsukusa.”
In ten months, he is able to begin harvesting and enjoy his profits.
Kasozi says the biggest mistake many farmers make is spraying banana plantations with pesticide meant for grass spraying.
Otherwise, he says, banana growing can be a lucrative business.
In many markets, bananas cost between shillings 45,000 to shillings 70,000, depending on where you go and your negotiation skills.
Kasozi is not limited in where he sells, “My market starts from home, I make sure I supply my neighbours first then go to Matugga, Kawanda, Kawempe markets among others”
The National Agricultural Reseach Organisation advises farmers to always give their land at least a three month fallow period after harvest to enable it regain its lost fertility.