How to Start Yam Farming in Nigeria (Beginners Guide)

Yam Farming is one of the profitable agricultural businesses in Nigeria that anyone can venture into. This article contains the step-by-step process of how to start a profitable yam farming business in Nigeria.

Is Yam Farming Profitable in Nigeria?

Being one of the staple food grown in West Africa, Yam has a huge market as it is consumed almost everywhere in Africa. Not only that, there is a readily available market for yam in the US, UK, Japan, Netherlands, France, Germany, and so many other countries. Hence, you can export yam or sell locally which makes yam farming in Nigeria lucrative and profitable.

products from Yam, there are many other produce you can export, Check out List of 23 Items You Can Export From Nigeria and Make Dollars

In addition, Nigeria is blessed with arable soils and a good climate which makes farming easier. Thus, venturing into yam farming is profitable once you know the ropes of the business. That being said, below is a step by step instructions on how to start yam farming in Nigeria.

Steps to Start a Profitable Yam Farming Business in Nigeria

Like Pawpaw farming , to run a successful yam farm requires a lot of skills and knowledge. Also, there are many factors you need to consider before starting a yam farm. You need to consider the soil to use, yam planting season, capital, equipment, and other necessary tools. That is why we have taken our time to list all you need to start yam farming in Nigeria.

1. Land Preparation

In farming, land preparation is the first step in planting any crops including Yam. Therefore, it is important to prepare the land you wish to use for your yam farm before the planting season.

You can prepare the land or soil by clearing the grasses, leaving it to dry up before planting your yam. Also, bear in mind that yam grows well on Silt Loam and Sandy Loam soil than other types of soil because it is rich in organic matter. Thus, ensure you pick the right land and soil for your yam farm for healthy produce.

Furthermore, yam grows well in upland and well-drained areas which makes it necessary to prepare ridges or beds before planting. Ensure the ridge beds measurement should be at least 1m apart and 4 to 5 inches high. In case your land is sloppy, the ridges should be made according to the contour of the land to avoid erosion. Check out the List of Common Farm Tools Names and their Uses

2. Seed/Sett Preparation

After preparation of the land, the next step is Sett preparation. Yam Sett or Seed are pieces of yam tubers that are planted into the soil to grow yams. So, it is very important to use a healthy yam Sett if you want a healthy yam farm.

Also, you need to consider the sizes, it should not be too small for the yam to grow healthy. Neither should it be too big to avoid wasting resources. Although, you can plant a whole yam Sett if it is small but it is advisable to cut it to smaller sizes. You can cut the yam horizontally from head to tail into different sizes.

Treating of Sett with fungicides and white ash on fresh surfaces helps to reduce attack from microbes. Also, pre-sprouting helps to reduce weeds making it easier to run a healthy yam farm in Nigeria.

3. Planting of Yam

The next step after preparing your soil and Sett is the planting of the yam seeds. Every plant has its planting season, so do yam. Depending on when it started raining in the year, you can plant your yam between February and April. When planting the yam Sett, it is advisable to lay it upside down and horizontally for it to grow healthily.

Also, the number of yams to be planted depends on your capability and land. For instance, you can plant between 20,000 to 27,000 Setts on a hectare of land. Also, a 100 by 100 plot of land is capable of producing close 200 tubers of yam if well cultivated. See How to Start Apple Farming in Nigeria: Complete Guide

4. Weeding and Other Maintenance

To grow healthy yams, you need to eliminate weeds from your farm to avoid it competing with yams for nutrients. Hence, weeding is important in cultivating a yam farm in Nigeria. Depending on the types of Sett you planted, you should perform weeding on your farm 2 to 4 times before harvesting.

Apart from weeding, restocking of dead yam Setts with new ones is important as well as irrigation, mulching, staking, and application of manure. Practicing all of these together improves the chances of yams growing healthily.

5. Harvesting

The next step in starting a yam farm in Nigeria is harvesting. It is an annual crop that takes up to a year before harvesting. For instance, if you plant your yam in February, you may have to wait till another year before harvesting.

Also, once you start seeing the yam stalks and leaves turning yellow, it shows that the yam is ready for harvests. Although, it is not advisable to allow the leaves and stalks to turn yellow and dry up before harvesting especially if you are selling it.

6. Preservation and Selling

No doubt, cultivating a yam farm in Nigeria does not end with harvesting. You need to preserve it in a barn before getting customers to supply to.

Getting customers for your yam is quite easy as it has a ready market. All you need is to visit the markets to know yam prices, inform yam sellers, restaurants, and many other potential customers.

How to Plant Yam in Nigeria

No doubt, starting a yam farm in Nigeria is profitable if it is done in the right way. With as little as N200,000 to N500,000, you can start a yam farm in Nigeria as long as you have the required knowledge and land to start with.

Hence, starting yam farming in Nigeria should not be difficult if you follow the above-mentioned steps. We hope you find our article on how to start yam farming in Nigeria helpful.


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