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Added: 3 weeks 4 days ago
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Making money from Irish potato seed multiplication
In Kisoro, a group of Irish potato farmers have embarked on the production of clean seeds that will ensure gardens are free of disease and pests.

In Kisoro, a group of Irish potato farmers have embarked on the production of clean seeds that will ensure gardens are free of disease and pests.

The yield of the Irish potato crop in Uganda has over time dropped and farmers say this is due to seed degeneration.

This is why farmers like Justus Kwesiga with help from development partners, have embarked on clean seed multiplication, which has proven effective. Kwesiga and his team now produce and multiply local varieties like Gwangume, Rukutu and Victoria.

The seed multiplication process starts with soil sterilisation, a process that kills the bacteria in the soil using the soil steriliser machine. Sterilisation takes about four hours after which, the soil mixture is taken to a screening house. The screening house is a means of protection from direct sunlight.

The platelets planted in the screening house to produce the main tubers spend here a period of three to four months. The main tubers, selected by their variety, are kept until they sprout. They are then taken to the already prepared field for multiplication.

Three or four months later, pre-basic and basic seeds are produced and taken to a seed store. They are also kept for three months.

The entire seed multiplication process takes one and a half years.

This team says, they have found seed multiplication a more lucrative business than potato growing. It is however, not without challenges.

 

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