HomeAGRIBUSINESSMchicha Farming in Kenya: Complete Guide

Mchicha Farming in Kenya: Complete Guide

Is mchicha agriculture in Kenya a profitable venture? Mchicha, also is comprehended as Amaranth in English, is one of the numerous traditionally cultivated vegetables in Kenya.

Although mchicha is one of the customary/kienyeji vegetables grown in all the country’s parts, its farming is done rather on a small scale. And surprisingly enough, the greens also produce wild on their own.

Mchicha has high levels of vitamin A, C, iron, & iron-related minerals. Did you also understand that you can drop amaranth seeds to make flour from different recipes such as porridge, Ugali, mandazi, & Chapati?

Mchicha Farming in Kenya: Climatic Condition

Amaranth can be cultivated in almost all climatic conditions with any soil type, provided that there is sufficient water supply. Even if soil fertility is an issue, it is suggested as they are more conducive to developing this crop.

Type of Mchicha Varieties

There are many amaranth vegetables, but the subsequent thrive well in this country the four main kinds of Amaranth, as indicated below. You can also notice that the variety is dependent on the size of their leaves and color.

  1. Wide Amaranth, This type of mchicha is usually dense in size, green in color, and has wide leaves.
  2. Narrow Amaranth These are understood by their characteristic small leaves and produce like a weed on the field. They usually take the briefest time possible to mature and be ready for harvesting and hence the market.
  3. White Amaranth These have elongate leaves with discoloration.
  4. Flour amaranth  Though not across-the-board, this type of Amaranth is usually red during the earlier stages of growth. When fully developed, it produces plenty of seeds required for flour making.

The flour may be applied in baking, and the leaves boiled as a vegetable or made into stew. Nothing goes to waste 😉

Field Preparation

To have a bountiful yield, it is always good to prepare the field one month before planting.

It is advisable to apply organic manure rotten to increase soil fertility. These fertilizer kinds will also make the soil better bonded & retain moisture for a long.

Here is how to prepare compost manure:

  • Use a 20-liter bucket of compost excrement in an area of one square meter.
  • Mix the compost nicely with the soil.
  • Two weeks before sowing, furrow the soils to soften & mix the compost.

Mchicha Farming in Kenya: Planting

Here there are two methods of planting Amaranth. You can choose to plant the seeds straight in the field, or you can plant seeds in a Seedbed and letter transfer the seedlings to the field.

Sowing/planting directly in the field

Here the seeds are planted directly into the field, and later when they have developed, some are uprooted. Then the rest of the plants are left to mature with a minimum space of 15-25cm.

The average amount of seed needed for a hectare of land is approximately 2 two kilograms.

To avoid overlaying the seeds, mix the seeds with the soil in equal amounts before applying in the field. Then pour in a little amount of natural soilor soft waste.

Lastly, distribute dry grass and water the soil. It would benefit if you kept watering daily in the daybreak and evening until the origins germinate.

Amaranth grains take three to five days to grow after the seeds have germinated; remove the grass on top of the soil.

Mchicha Farming in Kenya Preparing the Seedbed

The seedbed should be smooth and fertile enough. So after plowing, rake the soil and break any big clogs to soften it up.

Next, create small bulges one meter wide but of any height. Add compost manure in this amount of one or two roots per square meter.

Mix the compost with the ground thoroughly, then place the seeds mixed with the soil in rows about 10-15 centimeters apart.

After rubbing, cover the seed with a small portion of natural soil or soft mulch. Apply mulch & water.

Lastly, water the seedbed every day during morning & evening hours until the seeds grow. After 4- 6 days, remove the mulch and resume to water.

Transplanting

After precisely two weeks, the seedlings should be ready to transplant the field. Flush the seedbed a day before transplanting to avoid causing harm to the roots during transplanting.

Carefully uproot the seedlings & transplant them to a deepness of 3cm and 30-38cm between rows.

The spacing between one hole & the next hole should be 15 – 22cm. If you have large seedlings, use the spacing of 60cm from seedling to the other and 60cm from one row to the other; after trans-planting the seedlings, water the field in the coolness of the day.

It would be sufficient if you also weed your crops from moment to remove weeds. It is also advisable to moisten the plants in the morning & evening while they are still young.

Mchicha Farming in Kenya: Fertilizer

Apply five grams of fertilizer(UREA) every 10 to 14 days for every seedling.

Pests and Diseases

Pests

  1. Leaf Eating Beetles  These are hard-bodied insects that strike leaves by creating piercing holes. You can prevent or eliminate these pests by spraying insecticides like Carbaryl (Sevin), Actellic 50% EC, Sumithion, and Dimethoate.
  2. Cutworm These are greyish, grey worms that clipped the seedlings nearer to the ground. They conceal in the field during the day and come out to strike and reduce seedlings in the nursery during the dark.

Cutworms are controlled by using the drug Sevin or Sumithion. Use the pesticide to the soil or into the hole before transplanting the seedlings.

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