Courgette

INTRODUCTION

Courgette or Zucchini or squash has Fruits, leaves and flowers that are used as vegetables, and their seeds are consumed roasted as a snack food. Zucchini has a mild flavour and is very watery. It is often harvested when still very young. At this stage it is also called squash or courgette. Because the fruit has very little flavour of its own it is often used as a base for making savoury dishes. The seeds can be scooped out of and replaced with a filling – this can then be baked.

PRODUCTION

Varieties Ambasador F1, Simba F1, Zuchinni
Seed Rate 2 to 3 kg/ha for Trailing and 7 kg/ha for Bushy Zucchini
Fertilizer Rate 150-200 kgs/ha of DAP and 150-200 kgs/ha of CAN
Planting Spacing 2 to 3 m and population of 5,000 plants per ha for the long-running types1 to 1.5 m and population of 20,000 plants per ha for the bushy types.
Husbandry Zucchini and squashes are grown from seed. Seeds are sown and transplanted when they are 10 cm high or have 2 real leaves.
Pest & Diseases Pest Name Symptoms Control
Fruit flies Sunken, discolored patches, distortions and open cracks of fruits. Destroy all infested fruit. Spray with Flower-DS. Wrap fruits with paper.
Anthracnose Defoliation and lesions on the fruits. Practice crop rotation. Use certified disease-free seeds.
Maturity Duration 2.5 – 3 months
Climatic Conditions They require rich, well-drained soil that is able to retain moisture. It grows best in a sunny and sheltered position. Plants are tolerant to light shade. It prefers a pH of 5.5 to 5.9. Heavy application of good compost or well-decomposed manure is necessary. Irrigate during drought.
Harvesting Harvesting is done 3 to 6 days after appearance of the female flower. At the harvest season the fruits are harvested two to three times per week.
Post Harvest and Storage Summer squash of good quality can be kept for up to 14 days when stored at 7 to 10°C and 85 to 95%
Growing Regions Nakuru, Kiambu
Expected yields 7 to 12 t/ha

PROCESSING

Processing Courgettes are consumed fresh.

MARKETING

Place Marketed locally and exported
Price Kshs 30 per kg

CONSUMPTION

Products / By Products Courgette Fresh Fruit for cooking
Nutritional value – per 100 g / % Daily Values Energy: 16.0 / 1%; Carbohydrates: 3.3 / 1%; Proteins: 1.2 / 2%; Vitamin A: 17.0 / 28%;

FACTS & FIGURES

Golden courgette is a superior variety priced about 3-5 times the cost of the normal green courgette.

BUSINESS CASE

Income Per Hectare: Kshs 210,000 (7,000kgs * 30/-)Cost per Hectare: Kshs. 60,000 (30% of Income).NET:    Kshs. 150,000 (70% of Income).

Break Even Yield (Where Cost=Income): = 2000 kgs per hectare.

Income Frequency: Twice per year. Thrice under irrigation.




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