Sukulwenkosi Dube-Matutu, Gwanda Correspondent
MATABELELAND South province expects a harvest of about 13 850 tonnes from this year’s winter wheat crop.
Acting provincial agricultural officer, Mr Mkhunjulelwa Ndlovu, said the province planted a total of 1 700 hectares under the Command wheat programme and 500 hectares by individual farmers not registered under the Command programme. Harvesting is set for October.
“We are expecting to produce 12 tonnes per hectare under Command pogramme because farmers got enough inputs and the variety they got is good.
“In other areas we expect between seven and 10 tonnes per hectare but estates like Arda Estate should give us 12 tonnes per hectare,” he said.
Mr Ndlovu said the province had adequate water reserves and enough electricity to support winter wheat.
He said districts that had winter wheat crop include Beitbridge, Matobo, Mangwe and Insiza.
Mr Ndlovu said Arda Maphisa had about 600 hectares while Arda Ingwizi had 574.
Meanwhile, Mr Ndlovu said horticulture farmers in most areas were affected by frost, which destroyed tomatoes that were almost ready for harvesting. However, vegetables such as spinach, chomolia, rape, cabbage and onions were doing well.
Mr Ndlovu said due to the Covid-19 pandemic, farmers have been urged to plant a lot of spinach as it is rich in iron.
“We really appreciate efforts by other development partners that are funding the establishment of solar powered gardens which will asssit in expanding the hectarage under vegetables,” he said.
Mr Ndlovu said plans were under way to resuscitate irrigation schemes that have been idle for years. — @DubeMatutu.