Pepper (Piper nigrum Linn) is a spice that is easy to grow in various types of soil. Generally, pepper grows in sandy loose soil, however, in order to produce high-quality pepper, the plants require soil with sufficient nutrients and a soil acidity (pH) between 5 and 6.5. Apart from preparing suitable soil, managing the pepper plant is also crucial for producing high-value black and white pepper harvests. This article will explore some of the activities that pepper farmers should pay attention to ; when managing their land in order to achieve the best yields.
The fertilization process aims to fulfill the nutritional needs and improve the soil structure of the pepper plants. By applying fertilizers, crop production and health can also be increased. Farmers must carefully consider the dosage, fertilizer composition, and the correct application method to match the right fertilizer with their plants’ needs. The fertilization process is carried out in the beginning, middle, and end of the rainy season—approximately 7-10 days after pruning the supporting trees (tajar). At the start of the rainy season, it is recommended to give the pepper plant 600 grams of NPK (12:12:24) fertilizer plus 500 grams of dolomite. Following that, in the middle of the rainy season, the pepper plants are given 500 grams of NPK fertilizer (12:12:24). Finally, at the end of the rainy season, the pepper plants are given two types of fertilizers at once: NPK fertilizer (12:12:24) as much as 300 grams and organic fertilizer (compost/manure) of approximately 10 kg.
Soil loosening aims to break the capillaries of the soil and protect the surface from evaporating. This activity is usually carried out at the end of the rainy season by using a garden fork to dig to a depth of 5-10cm within a 1 meter radius of the pepper plant’s crown.
Another key activity in the management of the pepper farm is weeding. Weeding is a term for removing weeds, diseased plants, and parasitic plants attached to agricultural crops. Weeding is beneficial as it can reduce the competition for water and nutrients in the soil, thus ensuring the crops receive the adequate nutrition needed to support their productivity.
It is crucial that farmers seek information regarding land management as good and sustainable land management can reduce crop damage risks due to the lack of optimal soil elements, as well as certain pests and disease pathogens. One of the SpiceUp application’s main features provides knowledge and advice on Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) and sustainability. By using our application, farmers can access a data center containing various kinds of information regarding pepper cultivation, including land management, irrigation systems, and information about pests and diseases that commonly attack pepper plants. Download now to learn more from SpiceUp!