Tea production in Kenya has been consistently increasing through the past decades mainly because of the constant increase in planted area and best agronomic practices primarily by the small scale holders.
During the FY 2020-20221, Tea Directorate under Technical and advisory department has contracted to conduct soil testing for 8 counties in Kenya.
Objectives of soil sampling and testing
The main objective of the exercise is to promote efficient, cost effective, appropriate and sustainable use of NPK fertilizer as a factor for increased agricultural productivity.
Our soil sampling and testing is aimed at addressing following:
- To provide an index of nutrient availability or supply in a given field/region.
- To predict the probability of obtaining a profitable response to fertilizer application.
- To provide a basis for fertilizer recommendations for a given field/ region.
- To evaluate the fertility status of the soil and plan a nutrient management program.
- To advice on readily available micronutrients of Sulphur which is available in the natural ecosystem
- Recommend appropriate application rate for the tea growing regions and fields.
The Soil Analysis Report
The soil analysis along with the information provided will be interpreted and fertility recommendations will be made based on amounts of actual nutrients in the soil.
Tea directorate will then plan for a capacity building program in collaboration with respective County governments in the respective Tea catchment area where soil sampling was done. With this information, farmers can add appropriate nutrients and stipulated fertilizer ratio to obtain high yields.
By the end of this program, Tea directorate expects the following in the tea sector;
- Improved green leaf quality thus improved Made Tea quality
- Improve made tea appearance and liquor taste
- Proper management of soil as a natural resource for sustainable crop production.
- Proper soil nutrient management to ensure soil sustainability
- To address the production costs associated with the use of fertilizers.
- A cost effective and appropriate ratio for NPK fertilizer application by tea growers.