how to harvest 16 bags from 2kg packet

How to harvest 16 bags from 2kg maize seeds; the least maize farmers should harvest


Most regions in Kenya are experiencing early October short rains and farmers are in the rush to plant.

The central region of Kenya usually has two maize seasons planting three months varieties. In our last article, we did the best maize varieties one can plant in October for high yields.

However, most farmers in the central region have small sized lands of less than an acre and therefore plant 2-5kgs of maize.

Out of the 2-5 kgs, most of them harvest less than 5 90kg bags of maize at most.

This is below the maximum output of over 16 90kg bags from 2kg packets of maize seeds.

Did you know a 2kg packet of maize can produce 19 90kg bags or at least 10 90kg bags?

How to harvest 19 90kg bags from a 2kg packet of maize.

They say numbers never lie and here are the numbers.

A 2kg packet of double maize cobbler maize variety such as SC Duma 43, DKC90-89, DKC 777 or Haraka WH101 contains at least 5400 seeds.

Best maize variety to plant in October rains
A double cobbler maize variety

With a germination rate of 75%, we get 4,050 maize plants. Under good management, the plant can produce two cobs each with 630 seeds.

How to estimate the number of seeds per cob?

Count the number of rows (45) and columns (14). A multiplication of the two gives the estimated number of seeds per cob (=630)

Read Also;The best crops to plant during El Nino Season

Harvesting 19 90 kg bags of maize

  1. 630 seeds multiplied by 2 cobs and 4050 plants gives the farmers 5,103,000 seeds from our 2kg packet of seeds.
  2. 5103000 divided our seed count of 2700 seeds per kilogram gives 1,890 kilograms of maize. This is equivalent to 21 bags weighing 90 kilograms each.
  3. Assuming the rainfall is not reliable and the crop is not fed with enough fertilizer, the farmer should at least harvest 10 90kg bags from the 2kg packet of maize seeds.
  4. In an acre with a seed rate of 10 kgs, the farmer can therefore harvest at least 25 bags if poorly managed or 52 bags under good management.

How is this possible?

This high yield is only possible when;

  1. The maize is planted in fertile well-drained soils mostly loam or sand loam which cover over 80% of the Kenyan central highlands.
  2. There is enough water either rainfall or irrigation, especially in the first and third months of planting.
  3. The farmer plants a double cob variety. Luckily most maize varieties in Kenya are double cob varieties.
  4. The farmer must feed his maize as recommended;
    • Use of cow/pig/sheep manure at least 2kg per planting hole.
    • Top-dress with 50gms DAP fertilizer on the 14th day after sowing
    • Top-dress with 50gms NPK 23.23.0 ON 45th day after sowing
    • Top-dress with 50gms CAN ON 60TH DAY after sowing
    • Spray with Emaron 30sc at least twice to prevent and control maize stock borer and Fall armyworm.
    • The farm should always be clean of weeds.
    • If the farmer cannot afford fertilizer and has sufficient manure, he can use 2kg of manure and a seed rate of one seed per hole.
  5. A spacing of 20cm by 30cm is recommended.

You can reach out to our agronomists at +254736906472 for further assistance.

Conclusion

This is proof that farmers can maximise their production regardless of the land size. In this rainy season, as a farmer try at least to achieve 10 90kg bags from one single packet of maize or 5 90 kg bags from one kilogram of maize seeds.

The only way to make Kenya a food-secure nation.

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