By Herbert Musoke and Joshua Kato
Managing nursery bed
Okilan explains that when planting the cashew tree, the nursery is the beginning and the success of the farm. If the seedling gets any defaults from the nursery, it will affect the trees in the main garden and so will be on the harvest.
The area where you are going to set your nursery bed is slanted such that there is no water logging. Because they are very delicate, keep off all the animals and possible destructive animals like goats, stray dogs and chicks from your nursery bed.
Should I plant seeds directly or pot them before planting?
He says that Cashew seeds can be planted directly in the garden, but pre-germinating then is the best as you will have a 90% assurance of the viability of the seeds.
Also, a nursery bed helps to avoid the pests like lizards that eat the buds.
Here, first, soak it in water for three days with each soaking session lasting three hours, but change the water every day.
The shades should be temporary because when the seeds germinate, they should be kept for only two weeks. After all, if they overstay you will be inviting fungal diseases. Also, there should be no trees around to bring shade.
Do I need too much water to grow cashew nuts?
You need to have a source of water nearby preferably open source, but if you are to use tap water, keep it in drums for 24 hours before use to reduce the effect of the chemicals used to treat the water.
Overall, it needs less water compared to, for example, matooke or coffee.
When do I transplant the seedlings?
Seedlings must be transplanted within three months because if they overstay, they will coil and when you take them to the garden, they will survive but when they become big and heavy, they will break off.
Also, when the taproot grows into the ground, it will force the coiled area to straighten and eventually breaks and the tree will dry out.
Alternatively, when the taproot grows down in the bed, you will cut yet it will never develop again.
Cashew has a poor rooting system with lateral roots that don’t go deep. Since you already cut the taproot, it will develop secondary roots which are also lateral.
Therefore, when the tree grows and the canopy becomes heavy and the wind blows it, it will be swinging, breaking the roots and eventually dries out.
At the time of transportation to the garden, make sure there is enough moisture in the nursery bed three days before the date of transplanting. Ensure the seedling remains with the seed.
Avoid immediate loading because they will start shrinking in the vehicle by the time you reach the destination, a quatre is dead and when they overstay before they are planted, they will die.