Sugarcane farming is known to be a profitable business and over the years, it evolved from uncoordinated to a global industry in most countries where it’s carried out. With the recent advancement in technology, farmers can now comfortably grow crops such as sugarcane in a country where such crops can hardly survive and in places where there are few farming lands.
Sugarcane grows on almost all classes of soil, but it needs fertile, well – drained soil. Humid soils from 100 to 150cm deep with good drainage are most suitable. It grows well in deep well-drained soils of medium fertility of sandy loam soil textures with a pH range from 6.0 to 7.7. The optimum soil pH is about 6.5 but sugarcane can tolerate a considerable degree of soil acidity and alkalinity.
There are 2 methods of planting, namely manual and mechanical. The cane setts are manually placed end to end (or overlapping) together with fertilizer in the furrow and then covered with soil. With mechanical planting, the three operations of opening the furrow, planting the setts and applying fertilizer are conducted simultaneously.
Closer spacing tends to result in higher yields, provided there is adequate moisture in the soil. Row and plant spacing for manual planting is 1.0 to 1.3m x 0.5m. For normal mechanical operations, the best row spacing is between 1.4 and 1.6m. The setts are planted at a degree angle or laid horizontally in a furrow and thereafter are covered lightly with soil until they sprout then the sides of the furrow are turned inwards. Optimum cover is 50mm of soil.
Depth of Planting
Furrows for planting should be approximately 100mm deep. Sets should be cut into five bud lengths.
Sugarcane is used for sugar production, a raw material in human food industries, as a fertilizer and as livestock fodder. The primary use for sugarcane is to process sugar, which is then used in producing an infinite number of products. The type of sugar produced by sugarcane is called sucrose. Sucrose is used as a sweetening agent for foods and in the manufacturing of cakes, candles, preservation’s, soft drinks, alcohol and numerous other foods.
IF YOU WANT TO START SUCCESSFULLY IN THIS TYPE OF FARMING OR ANY OTHER FARMING OPERATION YOU WILL NEED A BANKABLE AND WELL – STRUCTURED PROFESSIONAL BUSINESS PLAN.
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