Farmers advised to prepare early for early rains

KAMPALA, Uganda-The ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) has advised farmers to carry out early preparation so that they are able to plant in time to be able to benefit from the short rains and improve on their harvests.

In his pre-season message to prepare farmers to increase agriculture production and reduce pre-harvest losses for improved food security and house hold incomes.

The Minister for Agriculture, Vincent Ssempijja said that due to seasonal difficulties brought about by climate change, there is need for farmers to do early land preparation so that they are able to plant in time in order to get maximum benefits from the short rains.

In a press statement, the Minister  advised farmers to prepare and buy planting materials in time and select seed varieties that mature quickly or are drought tolerant, especially farmers in areas that experience  short rains so that they are not affected.

The minister further asked the district extension officers to identify and link farmers who need to open up big acreage to tractor operators.

The Minister advised  farmers in areas that are affected by Pests and Diseases to carry out crop rotation and avoid planting similar crops in the same garden as this encourages and lead to pest and disease population build up.

“For areas which were affected by the Fall Army Worm, farmers should practice crop rotation for maize with other crops to break the pest/disease cycles. Repeated planting of similar crops in the same fields leads to pest and disease population build up and outbreaks due to the constant availability of foods for the pests and diseases.  Rotation of the crops is a good cultural practice that should be carried out by all farmers,” Ssempijja stated.