Farmers’ Diaries: Koketso Baloyi

Watermelons – Koketso Baloyi, Brits, North West

Once we have finished planting 4ha of cabbage, we start planting watermelon. We have ordered watermelon seedlings from Plant Forum in Brits. We have already prepared the land by ripping, discing and applying kraal manure.

Unlike cabbage, watermelon needs 1m between plants when we transplant – that’s because it is a creeper and needs space to grow and set good fruit. We plant 4 000 plants per hectare.

A week after transplanting, we put down 2:3:4 as a top dressing and a week later we apply LAN. Yet another week and we begin to use Agri-Boost on a weekly basis. Agri Boost is a liquid bio-organic plant food and growth stimulant that is environmentally safe.

It accelerates growth and boosts yields, but is harmless to birds, bees and mammals. We use 5ℓ/ha in a prepared solution mixed with about 500ℓ of water. From transplant to harvest takes up to three months.

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