In this article, I’m going to show you how to harvest Ugu leaves.
Ugu leaves can be harvested 2-3 weeks after planting. However, you don’t harvest your ugu plant anyhow. You need to follow some due processes if you want your ugu plant to continue growing and producing more leaves even after harvest.
For details on how to harvest ugu leaves the right way. Follow along with this handy guide.
Information About Ugu leaves
The ugu leaf is also referred to as Pumpkin leaf, it has now become a lucrative business in Nigeria. Before that, most people planted Ugu just to make a living. However, those with wide-eyed eyes have long discovered the business opportunities in Ugu agriculture and conducted drastic research on it. They have made reasonable money from it.
Ugu is the name given to the pumpkin leaf by Ibos, it is also referred to as nkong ubong in Akwa-ibom. It is a vegetable obtained by planting the ugu seeds.
Uses of Ugu Leaves
Ugu is a leaf mainly used for cooking soups and thick soups. It is also used as medicine as some people extract liquid from it, mix it with other things such as milk, malt drinks, tomatoes, as so on, and drink it, for health reasons. Ugu leaves is a widely consumed commodity that has a ready market like pepper because it is widely consumed; any vegetables that are eaten daily are worth trying.
The Ugu leaves, because of their high consumption rate, are usually in high demand. Ugu leaves are the most consumed vegetable, followed by waterleaf and so on, so the market is very high. It is a short-term plant, which means you can easily make money in the shortest time. No matter what season you are in, you will always sell your ugu planted. It requires little experience to start. You will make a lot of money from harvesting the ugu leaves because you can plant them at most 3 times a year.
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How To Harvest Ugu Leaves
To harvest the ugu leaves, you will need to start harvesting at least two weeks after planting or when the stem is long.
To do this, you need to cut the stem a little distance from the bottom of the stem with your hands, place your hands on the offshoots and cut. If you have no proper cutting experience, you can use a sharp object such as a knife to cut. When the tendrils are dry, it simply means the pods are ripe and ready for harvest; sometimes they fall off on their own, on the other hand, you have to cut them off.
Benefits of Ugu leaves
The ugu leaf increases the concentration of hemoglobin in the body, which is why some people call it a “blood medicine”. It contains antioxidants that are very beneficial to the body and can also lower cholesterol. Ugu contains glucose-lowering properties, so it can help prevent diabetes.
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Another benefit of planting the ugu leaves is that it offers you an opportunity to grow water leaves, bay leaves, curry leaves, spinach, and many others on your ugu farm.
Plants like the waterleaf, are mostly complementary to the ugu leaf as the easterner uses it in cooking the edikanikong soup. This is most certainly going to bring extra profits because it has no other different processing than the given processing to go to the ugu factory.
Again, people will come to you to buy because the demand for ugu is about 10 times the supply. At the same time, you can find market women, restaurants, hotels, bukas and restaurants to market your pumpkin leaves to and sell to. These people usually buy in bulk. This will benefit your ugu leaves, as the case may be because the more you cut the ugu leaves the more it grows and spreads out. Although, it is advisable to leave it at least 2 weeks before each harvesting. Your Ugu will have enough time to grow well before the next harvest, and your consumers who mostly prefer the fresh, dark green, wide or large leaves, will be happy to patronise you.
Conclusion: Harvesting Ugu Leaves
There are people who do not disturb themselves by raising a bed for their ugu leaves, this has no negative effects depending on the type of soil and environment. In places like Akwa Ibom State, a bed may not be needed. But for proper management and good statistics, adding more beds will be very useful.
Weeding as early as possible is the best way. When you postpone weeding, the leaves will turn yellow because weeds are also feeding on nutrients in the soil. In most cases, when the leaves of ugu leaves lack nitrogen, their colour will change from green to yellow.