Successful Farming from Cucumber Seedlings
Farming from Cucumber Seedlings: 4 Crucial Steps for SuccessCucumber farming from seedlings can be highly profitable, but to succeed right from the start, the prospective farmer should do their homework. Read on to discover the basic requirements to start commercial propagation of the vegetable in South Africa.
Important Steps to Take Before Starting the Farming ProcessAs with any business venture, starting a new crop propagation project means having to budget for space, labour, equipment, irrigation, fertilizer, environmental protection, and chemical treatments.
- Start with a Feasibility Study
Even before budgeting for these, the farmer has to conduct a feasibility study to determine if:
- There is a market for the particular cultivar
- It is better to target the fresh produce or processing market
- Enough space is available to grow the required number of plants to make it a profitable venture
- The market is close enough with consideration of the short shelf life of cucumbers
- Market prices are high enough to ensure farming profitability
The feasibility study shows the competitiveness in the market. The farmer needs to determine the input costs for the particular crop farming. This includes everything from the greenhouse facility to the harvesting, transportation, storage, and stock costs, to name only a few.
To this end, it is recommended to get more information from a trusted supplier of vegetable seedlings regarding the cost per plug, delivery, transplanting method needed, and best practices in growing the particular variety. See the seedling planting guide for information on transplanting plugs.
- Create a Business Plan
The business plan helps the farmer to determine the set-up costs, ongoing expenses, and the market for the particular vegetable crop. This also helps the farmer to determine what still needs to be done or bought. With it, the farmer can establish whether enough start-up capital is available, and if not, how much to borrow.
- Determine if the Conditions are Right for Growing Cucumber Seedlings
Conduct research on how to propagate the crop, how long it takes from transplanting the plugs to harvesting, and whether the right soil is available for the cultivar. Factor in the watering needs and whether enough water is available to ensure optimal irrigation requirements can be met.
- Buy Cucumber Seedlings from a Trusted Supplier
The right plant stock is essential to ensure propagation success. Cucumbers are mostly grown in greenhouse facilities where farmers can control the humidity and temperature fluctuations. With day length playing an important role in the flowering process, these facilities enable farmers to control light conditions and to provide the plants adequate protection against environmental factors, such as hail, wind, frost, and sunburn.
Farmers now also have access to grafted seedlings, which provide them benefits, such as:
- Uniform stand
- Higher yield potential
- Ability to plant more cucumber plugs in the given space
- Improved tolerance for soil-borne pathogens and nematodes
- Improved quality of the fruits
What to Do Right Now
Get a price on grafted and ungrafted cucumber seedlings for commercial crop farming from Hishtil SA for delivery anywhere in South Africa.