How to Make Money from Growing Watermelon in Nigeria

Make money from growing watermelon

Picture by ElyJay


Watermelon, citrullus lanatus rank third among the world highly cultivated crops, superseded only by potato and tomato in that order. In fact planting watermelon made me become lazy and mono cropper. Before I started planting watermelon, my chief crops were maize, cassava, yam, cocoyam and rice. But after planting watermelon for two years, I abandoned other crops and concentrated on watermelon till today.
When you are considering quick cash in farming, watermelon is among the crops to consider. The gestation is not more than 80 days, money don come. Kudi yaazo. Cultivated all over tropical climate the largest producers are China, Turkey, Iran, Brazil and U. S. A. in that order. It is produced all over in Nigeria from Maiduguri to Lagos and from Sokoto to Calabar.

Time of planting In southern Nigeria

We have three planting seasons: Early planting is in March, Mid season planting and the most lucrative but risky is June 25 to July 15. Late season planting is August 15 to September 15 in Kwara Oyo and northern parts of Ogun state. Planting in south Ogun, that is Ilaro, Ifo, Ota, Idiropo to Badagry in Lagos is September 15 to October 15. This is
because late rains last till December in these areas.

In the Northern Parts; early season planting is in May and late season planting is July. But with functional irrigation in the north, they are able to plant throughout the year .Lake chad basin in Bornu, Hadeja river basin in Kano are the major irrigation projects turning out watermelon all year round in Nigeria. I am aware that when the price goes so high watermelon is imported into Nigeria from Niger, Chad, Benin and Togo republics.

LAND PREPARATION
Watermelon requires loamy soil or silt loam soil it also perform well on heavy soil if it is well-drained. It does not tolerate waterlogging at all. So if planting on heavy soil, ridging will be helpful to improve drainage. On loamy soil, we normally plant on the flat land. Plowing starts immediately on the first rain. Even if the first rain comes in January, plow the land ready for the second operation.
If the second rain comes any time after February 15th, we can plant in Lagos and southern parts of Ogun state. In other parts, Igbogila, Ayetoro, Abeokuta, Odeda and all parts of Oyo state should plant in March. Planting should stop by the end of March. If you risk planting in very early April, you may succeed but if the June rain should start before 15th of June forget it. The tendency is that either the melon will not ripe or you loose a lot to blossom and it rots. Maturity takes a minimum of 75 days. On the second rain or within the stipulated time, harrow or replow and plant immediately. Experience has shown that portions planted immediately after plowing records higher germination percentage than portions planted the following day unless there is overnight rain.

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elyjay

About elyjay

Elyjay (Adams Odurinde) was born into farming at Mushin, Lagos State. His experience in poultry starts in 1966 at the very plot that is now number 64 Ladipo Street, Mushin. ElyJay's exposure to farming at a very early age started his deep passion for farming, which was nurtured when he study Tropical agriculture at Lagos State Polytechnic. Still actively engaged in farming, his hobbies includes reading and writing hence the blogging about farming for Haba Naija.

15 thoughts on “How to Make Money from Growing Watermelon in Nigeria

    1. elyjay

      Watermelon is imported ro call call it smuggled into Nigeria trough seme border between February to May every year We dont produce enough watermelon in Nigeria for export. But thanks to the Hadeja and Lake chad irrigation schemes are producing watermelon all year round.

    1. elyjay

      It depends on the type of herbicide, there is pre planting herbicide, pre emergence herbicide, post planting or post emergence herbicides. Mistake in the choice of herbicide can be very fatal so be very careful about it

  1. abiodun

    Nice write up, after planting it, do they ripe at once or in batches? Can someone get market for let say 50 acres farm of watermelon?

  2. elyjay

    No they do not ripe all at once, if you can not differentiate the ripe from unripe it is advisable for you to leave all to ripe before you pick.

  3. ik Edos

    In Edo state, when to plant hand what is the distance btw the plant. Finally what is the average cost per time in N

  4. Nelson

    hello i so much like your write up here, i have been reading many articles on agriculture because i want to start farming by march, can you kindly give me more information on this water melon, in fact i will like to have your contact details as i will need your experience in many areas my email nelsonbrown11@yahoo.com please get in touch with me and leave your contact details. thanks

  5. ogunleye afolabi

    am going into water melon production but my concern in the market, and also what size of land can guarantee 100k profit and the cost of production. thanks

  6. mr Isioma Dickson

    From your explainations here, is like the major challenges watermelon face is access rain water, what of the ideas of providing water for the plants? That be watering the plants. Is there any where one can have basic couching for planting?

  7. seun

    Nice write up. It going to really help but I need to ask some questions. Can I get a direct email address or a number to call you on please. Thanks

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