Apples have a market demand globally. Apple farming in Kenya has been on the rise.
Farmers have been interested in apple farming and are now able to get their source of income. Apple farming in Kenya is done either through grafting or through seeds.
The difference is that through seeds, the taste completely changes from the seed parent but for the grafts, the apples retain the taste of the retaining the properties of the parent.
Some conditions need to be considered for apple farming in Kenya. They include soil properties, climatic conditions, and the varieties of apples the farmer is growing.
Apple farming in Kenya takes place mostly in the highland areas.
Benefits of Apple farming in Kenya
Most of the benefits are health benefits and they include the following:
- Used in controlling obesity
- Strengthens the heart
- Helps to clean and detoxify the body
- Controls insulin level
- Quenches thirst
Types Of Apple Plants In Kenya
Here is a list of all the common types of Apple plants in Kenya:
1. Winter Banana
3. Top Bread
4. Brae Burn
6. Golden Dorset
7. Cripps Lady
Varieties of apples planted in Kenya
The following are some of the varieties of apple you can find in Kenya and East Africa: winter banana, Anna, top bread, brae burn, Fiji, golden Dorset, and Cripps lady.
- Winter banana – bears large fruits of good quality, very important in production and pollination.
- Anna – has a sweet flavor of poor quality, ripens earlier, it requires winter banana and golden Dorset as a pollinator.
- Golden Dorset – a yellow and sweet fruit, during its early stages of maturity, it is pollinated with Anna.
How Profitable is Apple Farming
Apple farming is very profitable. If you make the right investment in your apple business in Kenya, you are going to make a lot of profit. You can expect to make about $3000 per acre every year if you make the right investment. That means apple farming is very profitable.
Good Conditions For Growing Apple In Kenya
To start Apple Farming in Kenya, below are the good conditions you must consider the following:
1. Apples prefer sandy, loam soil, well-drained soil.
2. The soil should have a pH of 5-6.
3. Standard rainfall between 800mm to 1000mm, very high rainfall can make the apple prone to fungal diseases.
How To Manage Apple Farming In Kenya
Below are some of the best ways you can use to manage your Apple farming:
- Requires pruning after every two to three years
- A low temperature of 13 degrees Celsius break dormancy
- Controlling pest and diseases through regularly applying pesticides and insecticides
- Mulching – maintains moisture around the seedlings and prevents the growth of weeds
- Intercropping – intercropping the apples with beans and apples to ensure lateral growth
- Staking – provides support to dwarf trees which carry a lot of apples
- Fertilizing trees – applying fertilizers regularly to promote growth
- Windbreaks – are planted to protect seedlings from very strong winds
- Dormancy breaking – it needs a higher altitude to enable break dormancy
- Yields – very mature trees can produce about 20kg yearly
- Fruit handling – when the apples are ripe, they should be harvested.
- Fruits should be placed nicely in cartons ready for marketing
- The marketing of apples in Kenya is very transparent.
There is already a market locally and internationally. Most farmers have benefited from apple farming in Kenya.
Good luck to you with your Apple farm, here is where we leave you on the road, and we shall do our best to add more information to this guide.
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