Despite fetching good prices in the local and international markets, only a few farmers have embraced peach farming in Kenya. The fruit is essentially a luxury in most parts of the world. Kenya mainly exports peaches to Belarus, Rwanda, Singapore, and Somalia. They are extensively used in making juices, butter, topping for yogurt, waffles, ice cream, and as filling in pies and tarts. This shows that their demand is literary high. With few farmers growing the crop, the supply is still low. Why not take advantage of the market gap and leap from the lucrative agribusiness?
Rainfall: Peaches require moderate and well-distributed rainfall of about 800mm – 1000mm per year. The plant can also survive in arid and semi-arid areas although it must be grown under irrigation
Temperatures:The ideal temperatures for peach farming range from 200C – 300C. Ideal temperatures during fruit ripening are about 240C.
Altitude:Peaches thrive in altitudes ranging from 1500-2500m above sea level.
Sunlight:The crop requires at least 6-8 hours of sunlight per day.
Soils: Peach requires deep, fertile, and well-drained soils with a pH range of 5.8-6.8. The fruit thrives in high hills and foothills.
Areas grown in Kenya
Peaches can grow in all parts of the country. The management techniques, however, vary depending on the position, location, and climatic conditions.
Spacing and Planting
A spacing of 5m x 5m or 5m by 6 m is recommended. Planting holes should be large with a diameter of 2ft x 2ft and 2ft deep to accommodate the root system. The topsoil should be mixed with well-decomposed manure to improve soil fertility and aeration. Mulching is recommended to increase water retention.
One acre occupies between 150 – 200 peach seedlings.
The orchards should strictly be weed-free. Planting cover crops and mulching is recommended to minimize the growth of weeds.
Varieties of Peaches
Peach varieties that are commonly grown in Kenya include;
Grafted peach trees start bearing 3-4 years to start bearing.
Pests and Diseases
Some of the pests and diseases affecting peaches include;
- Fruit flies
- Root rot
- Powdery mildew
- Leaf curl
Production and output
Peaches are highly productive when proper management techniques are employed. Each tree can produce between 300-700 fruits per year. When the yield stabilizes (in the 8th year), each tree can produce more than 800 fruits per tree.
With a unit price of Ksh 10 per fruit, a farmer can earn between Ksh 450,000 – Ksh 1,050,000 in the 4th – 7th year. From there the farmer will earn a minimum of Ksh 1,200,000 per year.
Price per seedling
At Oxfarm Ag Ltd, we sell certified and high-quality peach seedlings at Ksh 300 each.
Establishing a peach orchard has never been easy. Setting up an orchard requires expertise and extensive research to avoid frustrations and losses. A poorly established orchard means losses throughout the entire peach farming venture. For this reason, Oxfarm Ag Ltd has come up with a package to help farmers successfully establish peach orchards.
The package costs Ksh 60,750 for one acre.
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE PACKAGE?
- Free consultancy
- 150 certified and high-quality peach seedlings
- Labor (digging of planting holes, soil treatment, and testing, planting)
- Organic manure (earthlee) equivalent to one bucket of normal manure (20% discount offered)
- Lifetime agronomy support
- Market connection