Sugarcane farmers expect bumper yield

Masvingo – Most Sugarcane farmers in the Lowveld are expecting a bumper harvest following heavy rains that pounded the Masvingo province, an official has said.
In an interview in Chiredzi recently, Commercial Sugarcane Farmers Association of Zimbabwe (CSFA Z) chairman, Admore Hwarare, said the crop has received a fairly good amount of rain that there might be no need for irrigation until harvest season.
“We are now happy because the rains have been falling. At least farmers can afford smiles on their faces because we had lost hope, as water levels in main supply dams had decreased.
“Now there is water logging in most plots and those are ideal conditions for sugarcane farming,” said Hwarare.
He said the incessant rains might render irrigation unnecessary.
“There is a drying season when the crop does not need any water apart from the moisture already within the soil. This means if it rains in February, we might forget about irrigating this season,” he said.
Hwarare said major dams had received significant inflows such that should rains disappear, the farmers will not have to panic.
Major dams like Bangala, are estimated to be more than 50 percent full.
“Some small ones are already full and others are now about 38 to 40 percent full, depending to the carrying capacity.
“We can expect a bumper harvest and contribute to more than 20 percent of total sugar production in the country let alone contributing to the national economy,” he said.

February 2013
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