Ugu Farming in Nigeria – How To Start

Ugu Farming in Nigeria – Ugu, also known as fluted pumpkin, is a popular vegetable in Nigeria, cherished for its nutritional value and versatility in various traditional dishes. Ugu farming presents an excellent opportunity for individuals looking to venture into agriculture and contribute to the country’s food security. This article will provide a comprehensive guide on how to start ugu farming in Nigeria, covering essential aspects such as land preparation, cultivation techniques, seed selection, and marketing strategies.

Why Ugu Farming in Nigeria is Profitable

Several factors make ugu farming a good way to make money. First, ugu is a healthy and popular vegetable in Nigeria and many other African countries. 

It has a lot of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, so people who care about their health will choose it. 

Secondly, ugu is easy to grow and doesn’t need a lot of help. 

It can grow in sandy loam, loamy soil, and clay soil, among others, and does not require much water. Because of this, it is a great crop for small farmers who may not have a lot of land or water. 

Third, it only takes about 70 days for ugu to grow, so farmers can get more than two harvests per year.

How to Start Ugu Farming in Nigeria

It is not too tough to get started with ugu farming in Nigeria. The steps that need to be followed are as follows:

Step 1: Land Selection and Preparation

Selecting the right land is crucial for ugu farming. Look for well-drained soil with a pH level ranging from 5.5 to 7.0. Ugu can grow in a wide range of soil types, but sandy loam soils rich in organic matter are ideal. Prepare the land by clearing it of debris, weeds, and rocks. Plough or till the land to loosen the soil and improve its structure.

Ugu is most successful in regions that have a temperature that is warm and humid, as well as soil that drains well.

Step 2: Prepare the Soil

Once you’ve found a good spot, the next step is to get the soil ready. Ugu grows best in soil that is rich in organic matter and has good drainage. 

To get the soil ready, get rid of all the weeds and trash on the land and plow it to a depth of about 20 to 30 cm. 

If the soil is not fertile, you can make it more fertile by adding things like compost or manure.

Step 3: Planting and Spacing

There are two options for planting ugu: either in the ground or in seed trays. 

When planting straight into the ground, make holes that are approximately 2 centimeters deep and spaced 60 centimeters apart. 

Put one or two seeds in each hole, then cover them up with the surrounding soil. 

If you will be planting in seed trays, first fill the trays with dirt, and then place one seed in each hole. Immediately after sowing, water the seeds thoroughly.

See also: How To Start Snail Farming In Nigeria

See also: Cocoa Farming & Production In Nigeria

Step 4: Irrigation and Weed Control

Ugu requires adequate moisture for optimal growth. Irrigate the field regularly, especially during dry spells. Drip irrigation is highly recommended, as it conserves water and minimizes weed growth. Weeds can compete with ugu plants for nutrients and water, so implement effective weed control measures such as mulching or manual weeding.

Step 5: Fertilization and Pest Management

Apply organic or inorganic fertilizers to ensure the plants receive essential nutrients. Conduct a soil test to determine the appropriate fertilizer composition. Ugu is generally responsive to nitrogen-rich fertilizers. Implement integrated pest management strategies to control common pests such as aphids, spider mites, and caterpillars. Use appropriate organic pesticides when necessary.

Step 6: Pruning and Support

As the ugu plants grow, they tend to vine and spread across the ground. To manage their growth and improve air circulation regularly, prune the plants by pinching off the growing tips. Providing support in the form of stakes or trellises will prevent the plants from trailing on the ground, reducing the risk of pest infestations and diseases.

Step 7: Harvesting and Marketing

Ugu is typically ready for harvest within 70-90 days after planting. Harvest the leaves when they are tender and bright green. Avoid over-mature leaves, as they can be tough and less desirable. Cut the leaves about 2-3 inches above the ground to allow for regrowth. Proper packaging and storage are essential to maintain the quality of the harvested produce. Identify potential markets, such as local markets, restaurants, and supermarkets, or consider establishing relationships with food processors.

Marketing Ugu in Nigeria

In the ugu farming sector here in Nigeria, sales are a vital component. In Nigeria, marketing ugu can be done in a few different methods, including the following:

Selling to Local Markets

Selling ugu in local markets is one of the most straightforward ways to put it on the market.

These marketplaces allow farmers to sell their goods directly to consumers. Farmers can sell their ugu at a competitive price by erecting a stall in the market and selling it there.

The ugu must be both fresh and of high quality.

Retail Wholesalers

Ugu can be marketed by selling to wholesalers, who then sell it to retailers like supermarkets and dining establishments. 

In most cases, wholesalers are willing to purchase large quantities of ugu at a favorable price. 

But, to attract wholesalers, farmers must be sure that their ugu is of high quality and complies with all of the necessary regulations.

Internet Marketing

Farmers in Nigeria can now sell their ugu on the Internet, thanks to the expansion of the country’s e-commerce sector. 

Farmers who want to display their ugu and attract new consumers might do so by creating a website or a social media page.

The use of online marketing is an effective method for expanding one’s customer base and generating more revenue.

See also: How To Start Snail Farming In Nigeria

See also: Cocoa Farming & Production In Nigeria


What is ugu farming?

Ugu farming is how people in Nigeria grow ugu, which is also called fluted pumpkin. Ugu is a popular vegetable in Nigeria because it is healthy and can be used in many different ways in the kitchen.

What are the benefits of ugu farming?

Nigerian farmers can get a lot out of growing ugu. It doesn’t cost much to cultivate, doesn’t need many resources, grows quickly, and gives a high return on investment. 

Ugu is also a crop that has a lot of nutrients, which makes it a popular choice for people who care about their health.

What is the best time to plant ugu?

The best time to plant ugu in Nigeria is from March to September when it rains most of the time. Ugu needs a lot of water to grow, which is why it grows best during the rainy season.

Is ugu farming profitable?

Yes, growing ugu can be a good way for Nigerian farmers to make money. Ugu has a high return on investment because it is nutritious, grows quickly, and requires few resources. 

But farmers may face problems like pests and diseases, trouble getting money, and problems selling their crops.


Ugu farming in Nigeria offers a promising opportunity for individuals interested in agriculture, by following the steps outlined in this guide, aspiring farmers can start ugu farming successfully. Remember to continuously educate yourself about best practices, stay updated on market trends

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