Groundnuts Tree of Life

Groundnut

Seed

 

Shona: Nzungu

 

Latin: Arachis hypogaea

 

Groundnut is an important crop for smallholder farmers in Africa, and is important for their economic prosperity and nutritional welfare. Groundnut is a vital source of cash income and nutritious, high-protein food for the family, providing both fat and protein. Groundnut is an important source of dietary protein, fat, and vitamins such as thiamine, riboflavin and niacin for children.

 

Varieties

SHORT SEASON (110-130 Days)

  • Valencia R2 (Red)

  • Bob White(Pale Pink)

  • Natal Common (Yellowish Brown)

  • Plover (Yellowish Brown)

 

MEDIUM SEASON (120-140 Days)

  • Swallow (Dark Red)

 

LONG SEASON (150-170 Days)

  • Makulu Red(Dark Red)

  • Egret (Pink)

  • Flamingo (Light Red)

 

Best results are achieved deep well-drained soils in good condition; production should not be attempted on soils of low fertility, or on soils known to be worked out. Suitable soils include sands, loamy sand and sandy loams. On heavier soil types, we conditions at harvesting may cause problems.

 

Lifting is a problem in the heavier soils because some pods break away from the plants and remain in the ground, and excessive quantities of soil often stick to the lifted pods. Built-up beds – the tramline system – together with an irrigation prior to lifting, will help reduce the number if pods left in the soil and will reduce the quantity of soil adhering to lifted pods.

 

In areas up to 1500 metres above sea level, the varieties Makulu Red, Egret and Flamingo will produce maximum yields under irrigation. Good yields have been achieved in the Lowveld with Plover and Natal Common.

 

Although their yield potential is not as high as the long season varieties, their shorter season length could make them suitable in certain rotations. Similarly, Valencia R2, Swallow and Bob White could be considered for Middleveld and Highveld.

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