Do you want to start a cucumber farm in Ghana? Cucumber farming promises high profits if everything is done right.
We have put this article together to guide you on how to successfully commence a cucumber farming business in Ghana. It will be a long one as it discusses everything from start to finish. If you really have an interest in cucumber production, you’ll love this guide.
Let’s get started.
You can watch the video below or continue reading the article.
Why must you start a cucumber farm?
- little or no experience is required
- there is always demand for cucumber
CUCUMBER FARMING BASICS
What is a cucumber?
WRITING A BUSINESS PLAN.
This is the part most young Ghanaians fail to pay attention to. It is, however, a very important part of your business. Note that if you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.
Before you start any business make sure you have carefully written out a well-detailed business plan. A business plan is basically a road map leading you to success in business.
It shows how you intend to grow and sustain your business. It should include the following:
CAPITAL NEEDED TO START
How much does it cost to start a cucumber farm in Ghana? There is no direct answer to this question. The bigger you want to start, the bigger the capital required. A small-scale backayard cucumber farm don’t require very huge capital as compared with a large scale one. Its like every other business, the bigger you plan to start, the more capital required.
Choosing a farm land
Cucumber grows best in loamy or clay soil with adequate amount of water.
I have already discussed that you can use your backyard to start your farm. However, if you plan on getting a bigger farm land you need to read this section very well. In choosing a land for the farm you need to consider the following factors.
- Easy accessibility to the market
- Cheap labour
- Easy access to water
- Adequate exposure to sunlight
We wrote an article on The Prices of Farm Lands in Ghana. Read it.
How to grow cucumbers in Ghana
Preparing the land.
Once you’ve successfully secured a land, you need to prepare it for the planting to commence. It is required that you follow the best practices to ensure sustainability of the farm.
- Clear the land
- Tilt and make ridges on it to help loose the soil for effective growth and weed control
- Treat the soil with organic manure such as poultry litter, cow dung, etc.
Selecting the best seeds
The quality of the seeds you choose determines the yield of the farm. It is advisable you plant seeds that can grow well in the type of land in your area. Most cucumber farmers in Ghana prefer hybrid seeds because they are already treated. Some known species of cucumber are: Thai, Murano seeds, Tokyo F1, etc.
Planting the cucumbers
Plant the cucumber seeds two days after applying the fertilizer. Note the following during planting of your cucumber seeds.
- Plant directly in the soil or use nursery and transplant the seed into the soil after the third leaf sprout out.
- Distance the furrows 70cm apart
- Plant 2cm deep into the soil
- Plant two seeds per hole. 50cm apart if you are staking, 100cm apart if otherwise.
Mulching is done for conservation of soil moisture, improving fertility and health of the soil, reducing weed growth and enhancing the visual appeal of the area.
Weeds compete with plants when left to grow. You can use hoe or herbicides. When using herbicides make sure you don’t spray the cucumbers with the chemical.
After the first application of fertilizer before planting, apply again during the vegetative, flowering and fruiting stages. Cucumber plants are heavy eaters as such their manure/fertilizer should be increased on every application, this is a kind of practice carried out in cucumber farming in Ghana. This will bring about healthy germination and bigger fruits.
It is a good thing to stake cucumber plants as it allows for easy movement in the farm, it also helps in monitoring cucumber growth, performance as well as good utilization of available space. A bamboo tree can be used for staking with rope for trailing of the seedlings. Use jatropha plant as a perimeter fencing since it repels cattle, other predators and also add economic value to the soil.
Do not allow fertilizers to touch the leaves of the cucumber plant because it can make the plant to stunt. Fresh cow dung is high in ammonia (nitrogen) and when it touches the plant burns them off, also they carry vectors that stick to the vegetables which cause harmful disease to humans when consumed. Treat dung for about 1-3 months before use.
You can mix one litre of fresh blood in four litres of water and apply as a soil drench, if your plant is fruiting you use liquid fertilizer. When too much water is applied on the cucumber farm a fungi disease-downy mildew will manifest due to humidity, to fix it mix four tablespoons of baking soda in four litres of water and use it as folia spray.
Pest and Disease Control
Controlling pests is a very important aspect of crop production in Ghana. Failure to pay attention to this aspect can ruin your farm.
You’ve successfully cultivated cucumber, its time for harvesting.
Generally, it takes approximately 50 – 70 days for cucumber to fully grow for harvesting. This depends on factors such as weather conditions, nutrients, species, soil, etc.
Marketing your farm produce.
Now the cucumbers, are fully matured, what is next? You need to get it to the market to be sold. You need to advertisement to potential customers to easily sell them. Putting good marketing strategies in place influences the profit from your farming business in Ghana.
If you are able to sell your products quickly and easily it is signal that you should expand the farm. You can partner with restaurants and other retailers to buy your cucumbers at wholesale prices.
After you have successfully set up your poultry farm business, you have to do the needful. Get the business registered and pay the necessary taxes to prevent facing problems in the future.
I hope this cucumber farming in Ghana guide will help you to plan for your new business. Before you commence visit other farmers in Ghana near you to observe how they do their stuff. Note that experience comes after you’ve started. So do not let anything hinder you from starting.
All questions answered
How many cucumbers can you get from one plant?
A healthy cucumber plant can be expected to produce 10 large cukes or 15 small ones within a harvest period