Farmers Optimistic Of Decent Harvest

 Farmers are now expecting to get a decent harvest due to the weakening of the El Nino phenomenon which was expected to cause severe drought in most parts of Southern Africa including Zimbabwe.
Due, to late rains farmers have planted about 2,4 million hectares as compared to 2,6 million hectares planted last year.
Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development Permanent Secretary Professor Obert Jiri said the country has over 70 000 hectares under irrigation.
“We will have over 70,000 hectares under irrigation. We are tailing off a collection of data we know that over 70 000ha will be under irrigation between maize and some traditional grains. We also have further hectarage that will be put under soya bean by the contractors to take that to almost 100,000 hectares of irrigable land in the summer season,” he said.
He added, “Most of the irrigated crop is planted in October so it’s looking very good, we expect the maize crop to be physiologically mature by the end of February. The target for our summer maize, we are targeting 1,9 million ha to be put under maize and we have done around 1,4 million ha under maize.
Farmers indicated that although the season started late there is a possibility of attaining better results due to the wet spell.
Zimbabwe Commercial Farmers Union (ZCFU) president Dr Shadreck Makombe said, “The crop is promising, adding that the livestock is in good shape due to the availability of pastures. Although we delayed planting because we did not receive rain on time, this means we are also going to have a reduced harvest, but it will be meaningful”.
Agriculture and Rural Development Advisory Services (ARDAS) Mashonaland West director Evelyn Ndoro recently confirmed that there was a great improvement in crops and livestock
Matabeleland South’s acting provincial agricultural director rural development services, Mkhunjulelwa Ndlovu said crops across the province were in fair condition. He said livestock, especially cattle in resettlement areas where pastures were fair, were still in a good state.
Shumirai Nyamadzawo

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