How Long does it take Plantain to Grow in Nigeria?

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Hello there! Embarking on plantain farming in Nigeria is a thrilling journey full of potential for both beginners and seasoned farmers. If you’re considering starting, here’s a comprehensive guide to help you dive into the world of plantain farming.

Growing Period Plantain trees usually require about 8 to 9 months from planting to reach the first harvest. The exact time can vary based on factors like variety, soil fertility, and weather conditions. Following the initial harvest, the new bunch ripens within a week​​.

Ideal Conditions for Growing

  • Location and Soil: Ideal farmland is located in rainforest or mangrove swamp zones, characterized by ample rainfall and humidity. The soil should be rich in organic matter and well-drained, with loamy soils being the best fit​​.
  • Land Preparation: Start with clearing the land and ensuring it is free of weeds and debris. Using a lot of manure is advisable to enhance soil fertility​​.
  • Irrigation: Even in areas with less rainfall, plantain farming can thrive with the help of irrigation systems, preferably drip irrigation, to ensure the plants get water all year round​​.

Planting Materials For the best results, use healthy, disease-free suckers of high-yielding varieties. Costs for suckers range from N50 to N200 per piece, and a hectare can accommodate between 1,500 to 2,000 suckers depending on the planting arrangement​​.

Planting Process

  • Best Time to Plant: The optimal planting period is during the rainy season, specifically in its middle months, to ensure the plantains receive enough water in their early growth stages​​​​.
  • Spacing and Depth: Plant suckers at a distance of 3m between rows and 2m within rows, or 2.5m x 2.5m for alternative spacing. The depth of planting should be between 10cm to 15cm​​​​.


  • Regularly weed the farm to remove competitors for nutrients and sunlight.
  • Mulching helps in moisture conservation, erosion prevention, and weed suppression​​.
  • Application of fertilizers is crucial for replenishing soil nutrients. High phosphate fertilizers are recommended at planting stages​​.

Harvesting Your plantain should be ready for harvesting between 8 to 11 months after planting, depending on the variety. It’s often best to harvest while the plantains are still unripe, based on market preferences​​.


  • Start marketing before you even plant. Research the market demand, potential buyers, and best selling points.
  • Consider processing plantains into products like flour, chips, or porridge for higher profits​​.

Investment Costs The total cost of starting plantain farming in Nigeria for a hectare of land can range from N300,000 to N1,300,000, considering land acquisition, planting materials, land preparation, and other farming activities​​.

Embarking on plantain farming in Nigeria requires dedication, proper planning, and adherence to best agronomic practices. By following these guidelines, you’re setting the stage for a successful and profitable plantain farming venture.

Feel free to reach out if you’re looking to buy or need further guidance on starting your plantain farm. This journey, though demanding, can be incredibly rewarding!

What’s the best soil for plantain farming in Nigeria? Plantain thrives in loamy soils that are rich in organic matter and well-drained. These types of soil are prevalent in Nigeria’s rainforest and mangrove swamp zones, providing the perfect environment for plantain growth​​​​.

How much water do plantains need? Plantains require a lot of water, especially during their first 3 to 5 months of growth. It’s recommended to plant during the middle of the rainy season to ensure they receive adequate water. For areas with less rainfall, setting up a drip irrigation system is crucial to provide water all year round and can significantly increase yield​​​​.

What type of suckers should I use for planting? For the best yield, it’s recommended to use healthy, disease-free suckers of high-yielding varieties. Tissue cultured suckers are ideal as they are bred in clean environments and are free from harmful pests and microbes. However, if using uprooted suckers, ensure they are treated with pesticides or dipped in hot water to kill any pests or diseases​​​​.

When is the best time to plant plantain? The optimal time for planting plantains is during the rainy season, particularly in the middle months. This timing ensures that the plantains get enough water in their critical early growth stages without the need for artificial irrigation​​​​.

What maintenance practices are essential for plantain farming? Regular weeding, mulching, and proper fertilization are crucial for maintaining a healthy plantain farm. Weeding should be done manually or chemically every 6 to 8 weeks to prevent competition for nutrients. Mulching with organic matter helps in moisture conservation and weed suppression, while high phosphate fertilizers are recommended at the planting stage to support growth

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