Coriander, popularly known as dhania back here in Kenya is a popular spice used in stews and kachumbari. It is loved for its unique aroma and flavor that it adds to food.
Its always in demand regardless of the timing. It is becoming a force both locally and internationally in terms of market and returns. According to reports, coriander and other similar spices’ demand has gone up by more than 40% with growers gaining more money of up to 25% compared to traditional crops. Below are a few tips to help you venture in dhania farming.
A farmer can get quality certified seeds from Kenya seed Company, Kenya Highlands Seed Co, Simlaw Seeds and others for less than Ksh 1000. After tilling land, plant coriander seeds in drills 30cm apart at a sowing depth of 2.5cm – 3.5cm. You should expect germination to take place 10 days after sowing.
How do you care for Dhania?
To control weeds, thin the plants when they get to 7-15cm. Coriander also requires regular watering as the plant responds well to even distribution of moisture. Also ensure the soil is rich in manure. If not, apply well decomposed organic manure regularly. Some of the challenges you’ll face are attacks from pests like aphids and diseases like bacterial leaf spot, soft rot and powdery mildew. However, these are easily controlled through maintaining field hygiene, crop rotation, seed dressing and using disease free seeds. Spraying with pesticides and fungicides is not recommended unless it is necessary.
Within 4-6 weeks after planting, your coriander should be ready for harvesting. Always start by harvesting the largest ones to allow the smaller plants get enough space to grow. You are highly recommended to harvest dhania when its leaves are ripe and still green otherwise they will get feathery and turn yellow. For storage, you should soak the harvested dhania in water to maintain their freshness.
How much do I need to invest in an acre?
For one-acre piece of land, cosiander seeds will only cost you Ksh 1000 for you to get maximum yield. Dhania is fairly easy to grow and maintain as the farmer doesn’t need to spend much on labor. A farmer should be able to make a profit of 40,000 a month.
Note! Dhania requires enough water
If you have that piece of land no matter how small it is and you are looking on ways of making an extra coin, well, dhania farming is a fair consideration. coriander has a ready market both locally and abroad. What are you waiting for!! go make that extra coin.