This is one of the crops that commands high price, especially during the drought period. From February to early April, a box of tomatoes will go for sh450,000 at the farm and over sh600,000 in the market.
Tomato seeds take 15 days in the nursery bed and 75 days in the main garden to start harvesting.
You need to spray with pesticides and also fertilise, especially with nitrogen and calcium. Tomatoes can be grown across most parts of the country, as long as the soils are loam, dark and fertile. Most varieties mature in 75-90 days.
The seeds are packed in various sizes, from sachets of 25-50 seeds which cost sh2,000-sh5,000, 100 seeds which cost sh12,000; 1,000 seeds which cost sh60,000 and more. An acre needs around 16,000-20,000 seedlings which cost around sh800,000-sh1,200,000.
Requirements at a glance for an acre
-Land: Owned or hired at sh250,000 an acre per year
-Clearing land: Sh500,000
-Buying seeds: Sh1,200,000
-Pesticides and fertilisers: Sh1,500,000
-Labour costs: Sh1,500,000
Total cost to Harvesting between sh5,500,000-sh6,000,000
Expected moderate yield is between sh15m-sh20m.