Plantain Seasons: Best Seasons to Plant, Harvest and Make Profits

Alt: = "plantain crop tree"

Investments in farming, processing and marketing of plantain in Nigeria have become lucrative ventures in recent times due to increasingly demand for plantain and its products. Plantain is highly sought after because of its nutritional values and medicinal effects — it is a good source of Iron, Potassium, Magnesium, Protein, Vitamins etc, and it is highly recommended food for diabetic patients, and a good preventive for health conscious individuals.

Almost every household consumes plantain in different forms. Plantain pulp can be eaten by cooking or frying it. It can as well be processed into flour. When processed into flour, it can be eaten as gruel and used in making biscuits, cakes, puff-puff etc.

The market is large, expanding and sustainable because it’s a basic food item, its demand increases with scarcity especially during rainy season, which is its off-season. One dozen of plantain is sold between N10,000 - N75,000 depending on sizes, seasons and locations. During the off-season, the prices go as up as N20,000 - N75,000 depending on sizes and locations. The demands and prices are highest in Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt.

Plantain is grown in all the 17 states of the Southern Nigeria. Nigeria produces about 2.8 million metric tons of plantain per annum.

Nigeria is the 6th largest plantain producing country in the world but not among the top 15 plantain exporting countries. There is therefore, is opportunities for Nigerian plantain producers at the export market.

Once planted plantain can continue to yield exponentially for next five years. After five years you can cut down all the plantain, burn the plantation, to improve the soil fertility and there will be new sprouts of the plantain crops. Read How to Start Plantain Farming Business in Nigeria and Maximize Profits

Plantain Seasons in Nigeria

Plantain seasons are divided into major two: the planting seasons, and the yield/ harvest seasons. We are going to look at the seasons accordingly to help you make a proper business plans. To know the right time to plant, expected harvest time and estimated market prices at different seasons.

1. Plantain Planting Season

There are different planting seasons for upland plant and swampy land/ irrigated plantain

For the upland, the best planting season is May to September. That’s as soon as rain sets in and before try season sets in. Within this period the plantain sockers  would be able to germinate, establish roots to withstand dry season. Plantain is a water loving crop and should be planted at the peak of the rains. 

Swampy or irrigated plantain: Season for swampy or irrigated plantain is between October to April. At this period there is little or no rains.

2. Yield and Harvest Seasons

Plantain is all-year-round yielding crop but peak yielding season is the rainy season, while  try season (October-April) is the peak harvest season. Plantain.  During  October – April plantain is usually  much available and  cheaper. Plantain takes about 8 months to start to yield and about 3 months to mature. That's to say, it takes about a year to have the first harvest from the planting date.  The planting date determines the first harvest date. 

Yield and Harvest Seasons for Upland Plantain

The first yield of up land plantain is usually during the off-season (May – October), but subsequent harvest are usually during dry season, which is the surplus season. Upland plantain uses rainy season to replenish and begins to yield but matures during the try season (October-April). 

Yield and Harvest Seasons for Swampy or Irrigated Plantain

Plantain on swampy or irrigated land when planted between October to April, the first harvest will be when the plant is very cheap, but subsequent harvests will be during the rainy season, when the plantain is scarce. At this period plantain is very costly — the prices go as up as N75,000 per dozen. You may like to read How to Plant Plantain on Swampy Land in Nigeria for Off-season Optimal Yield: Alternative to Irrigation

SUMMARY

  • Upland plantain planting season — May to October
  • Swampy land/ irrigation plantain planting season — October to April
  • Plantain harvest surplus season — November to April
  • Plantain harvest scarcity season — May to October
  • Plantain cheap season — November to April
  • Plantain costly season — May to October

With this information you can be able to make informed business investment decision based on what you intend to achieve 


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