Maize cultivation is a viable opportunity for farmers to make money this season in Nigeria. Maize is one of the most useful cereal crops in West Africa. Not only is it nutritious, but also known to digest quickly. It can be used to make porridge, pastes and even beer, while the freshly harvested cob is eaten either roasted or boiled.
Maize is very easy to cultivate and it’s less delicate than other crops (that is if you know the right steps to take). So why don’t we get right to it. Here are the simple things you need to put in place to cultivate maize in your area this season.
- Get Spacious Land:
Maize can grow in all lands in Nigeria, but it performs better in a well drained and fertile loamy soil. You can use land ranging from your backyard to forest land (in forest land, maize can perform better without fertilizer). Clear your land using laborers or mechanically, the aim is to remove the weeds and keep the soil loose for a proper seedbed and preservation of the top soil.
Make sure you plant your maize immediately after weeding, to avoid competition with the weed.
- Get Improved Maize Variety
This may be news for some of us, but there are several maize varieties. If possible, look for recommended varieties to improve your yield.
For an early planting season, you can get: Yellow Open Pollinated Varieties, Yellow Hybrid Varieties, White Open Pollinated Varieties and White
For late season: Plant early maturing, streak or downy mildew resistant varieties. Yellow Open Pollinated Varieties or White, Open Pollinated Varieties.
When planting, give space of about one feet from and between each plant.
- Apply Fertilizer & Weed Control
In cases where your soil is fertile, you may not need fertilizer. However, fertilizer application will help yield more.
You will need to start your first weeding from 15 days and not later than 25 days or as soon as you begin to observe the growth of weeds in your farm. A second weeding may not be required before the second application of fertilizer (if there is a need for second application of fertilizer) many farmers don’t apply fertilizer twice.
Afterwards, all you have to do is wait for your corn to mature and for your harvest to begin.