Sack Farming – A Step by Step Guide
Sack farming is the growing of crops in sacks. Sack farming is a unique invention in farming. It allows people to grow crops in their backyards, roof tops and other places.
With sack farming, crops can be grown anywhere. Sack farming encourages people to grow crops in small areas. Sack farming goes hand in hand with urban farming.
Sack farming is a type of vertical farming concept that can be applied to crop farming in Nigeria.
Sack farming is a unique farming concept that has been practiced for ages. With urbanization, more people are now looking at ways they can use sack farming for food production.
Steps to Take to Start Sack Farming in Nigeria
The following are the steps to take to start sack farming in Nigeria:
This is the first step to take to start sack farming in Nigeria. You need to select a site for your sack farming project.
You can use your backyard, garden, rooftop or farm etc. The site must have abundant sunshine and it should not be waterlogged.
Get Sacks or Bags
Sacks and bags are needed for sack farming. This is the place where the seeds or seedlings will be planted. The sacks will also house the soil or any growing medium.
Jute sacks, polythene bags, HDPE bags and sacks made with kenaf fibre can be used for sack farming.
Soil or Other Growing Medium
Soil is the easiest growing medium to get. It is also very easy to work with soil in sack farming. Top soil should be sourced.
Coco peat, perlite and other growing media can also be used for sack farming. Pebbles and stones are usually added to the sack for easy draining of the growing medium.
Manure or Compost
Chicken manure or other types of manure can be used for sack farming. This manure should be well cured so that it will be free of diseases and pests. Compost can also be used.
Type of Crops to Plant
You need to select the type of crops you want to plant. It is common to plant vegetables like cucumber, tomato, pepper, kale and Ugwu etc. in sacks.
Crops like potato, yam and maize can also be planted in sacks.
Cucumber sack farming is one of the most profitable types of sack farming in Nigeria.
Depending on the fertility of your growing medium, you may need fertilizers like NPK 15:15:15, calcium nitrate, potassium nitrate, chelates, foliar fertilizers and potassium sulfate etc.
If you are using soil, you may need to do a soil test to reveal the nutrients in the soil.
Crops grown in sacks like other crops are susceptible to pests and diseases. Pesticides like fungicides, insecticides, bactericides and acaricides etc should be used to manage pests and diseases in sack farming.
Staking Nets or Ropes
For some types of crops like cucumber and tomato, staking ropes may need to be used so that the crops will grow in a vertical and erect manner.
Stones or Pebbles
Stones or pebbles are needed to be placed in the sacks or bags. These stones improve the ability of the sacks to drain well.
Some small tolls like shovels, pruning shears and scissors may also be needed.
How to set up a sack farm
The first step in sack farming is to get a suitable space. This can be your backyard, garden, rooftop or frontage of your house etc. This space must be clear and open to sunlight.
Sacks made of jute, kenaf fibre and polythene etc. can be used for sack farming. The sacks should be cleaned and free of impurities.
Holes should be created at the sides and bottom of the sacks. This will enable water to drain from the sack. The side holes will also serve as planting holes for the crops.
Soil and manure should be mixed in the ratio 50:50. If you are not using soil, you can use compost mixed with coco peat. You may need to check the nutrients level of the growing medium you choose to use.
Small pebbles like stones should be added to the growing medium in the sacks. The pebbles enable the growing medium to drain water well. Poor drainage can cause root rots for plants, this can lead to the death of the plants. Poor drainage can also negatively impact the availability of oxygen in the growing medium.
Irrigation systems like the drip irrigation can be used to supply water to the sacks. Watering cans can also be used to wet the plants in the sacks, if your sack farm is small. You can get a technician to set up your drip irrigation system for you.
The seeds can be planted on the top of the sacks. Planting holes should also be created at the sides of the sacks. This means that seeds and seedlings can also be planted at the sides of the sacks. Sacks optimize plant population.
All necessary agronomic protocols like fertilization, application of pesticides, pruning and harvesting should be done.
Should want to engage in sack farming in Nigeria, you can contact us via 08025141924 or email@example.com.
Read about yam sack farming here.