Beetroot Farming In Kenya – The Complete Guide

Beetroot farming in Kenya is not quite popular as many individuals are not familiar with this fruit type. Beetroots grow just like onions and are commonly known by their scientific name as Beta Vulgaris.

Beetroots are always associated with many health benefits such as the source of Potassium, Vitamin C, fiber, manganese, iron, and lastly, folate (vitamin B9).

In addition to vitamin supplements, beetroots can be eaten raw in puddings, cooked in broth, or drunk in cocktails and fruit juices. Beetroot leaves are also edible, like spinach.

So, without wasting any more time talking about beetroot’s health benefits. How about we learn how to farm, harvest, and market it.

Beetroot Farming In Kenya: Soil Requirement

Beta Vulgaris does well in soils with a PH of 5.8-8.0. And as usual, it is always recommended to taste your soil for acidity levels if you plan on planting any crop.

Too many acid levels in the soil always affect most crops’ growth by causing a deficiency of essential nutrients.

Land Preparation

Beetroot seeds are sown directly in the fields as there is no need for a seedbed. We, therefore, advise preparing and tilling your area to a depth of 15-20cm. You are also encouraged to remove dirt and other unwanted twigs, shrubs, decaying plants, and tree stumps.

Prepare the soil in the field by mixing it with compost manure and making terraces or fields by creating ridges.

Then lift the ridges upwards to maintain good air circulation and also a right way of transporting water. Get rid of dirt, including decaying plants.

Beetroot Farming In Kenya – Planting

Once the field is dirt-free, start preparing ridges 1m apart by adding cow dung manure and mixing well with the soil. Next, create rows 20-25cm apart on top of the seams. Start sowing the seeds to a depth of 1-2.5cm deep and 10cm apart in the rows created.

Next, cover the seeds with light soil and then use dry mulching to include your field. If there is no enough rainfall, you’ll need to water the area twice a day, that is, morning and evening. Beetroots take about 5-12 days to germinate.

Applying Fertilizer

I would recommend using cow dung manure every seven days and watering when it comes to fertilizer application. You can also use industrial fertilizer NPK (Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium) in a good ratio.

Pests and Diseases Control

Let us look at some of the most common pests and diseases that affect beetroot farming in Kenya.

Aphids

Aphids come in different colors and sizes. For example, some have a dark brown color while others are green.

Aphids are 2mm long and love sitting underneath the leaves while sucking and enjoying the leaf tissue’s fluids. This behavior, in turn, will lead to sheet twitching and drying.

Prevention

Use Attakan cc 344e and Abamectin, among other insecticides. Crop rotation regularly will also help in getting rid of these pests.

Plant Rust

Plant rust causes the crop to have tiny patches that are orange or red-brown. Most of the time, this type of disease doesn’t significantly affect the plant and can be ignored.

Downy Mildew

The most common symptoms of this type of the disease are when the leaf turns yellowish and turns completely brown. But then again, you can also see a grey color under the blade of the plant.

Harvesting

For an acre of land, a good farmer can harvest between 1000-1500kg of beetroots. Use your hands to pull the beetroots by the leaves from the ground.

Tim Jumah
Tim is a practising farmer based in Trans-Nzoia. His love for technology in agriculture led to the establishment of this website.

Related

Latest

French Beans Farming in Kenya

French bean farming in Kenya is widespread, especially in warm-wet regions such as Thika, Machakos, Uasin Gishu, Kisumu, Narok, Nyeri, parts of Kajiado county,...

How to Start a Farming Business in Kenya

Starting a farming business in Kenya is tricky, but here are some tips for when you're ready to take the plunge. Many people want...

Mchicha Farming in Kenya: Complete Guide

Is mchicha farming in Kenya a profitable venture? Mchicha, also is known as Amaranth in English, is one of the many traditionally grown vegetables...

Fodder Beet Farming in Kenya: The Best Yielding Forage Crop

Fodder Beet, also is known as the fattening tuber, is a high yielding dairy fodder crop. As referenced in an article written in the...

How to Spot Infectious Poultry Diseases in Chicken Droppings

Identifying and knowing Infectious Poultry Diseases from an early stage may save you a ton of money from time to time. How to spot Infectious...

Onion Farming in Kenya: A Beginners Guide in 2021

Onion farming in Kenya takes place in almost every part of this country. However, onions thrive the best in the following locations: Makueni county, Kieni,...