Advantages of using compost manure

Disadvantages of using compost manure

  • It requires a lot of labour to prepare
  • It is expensive to apply since it is bulky
  • The quantity of nutrients is always unknown
  • Maybe a source of pests and diseases
  • It takes a long time to prepare
  • It May pose a health risk to the farmer
  • It has a bad smell


A seed is a fertilized ovule. It consists of an embryo and stores food materials Surrounded by a seed cot while cereal crops consists of embryos, endosperms and pericarp. As legumes have no endosperm.


  • Seeds are cheap than vegetative organs
  • Seeds are easy to handle and transport
  • They can be stored for a long period of time
  • Seeds are easy to plant
  • The control of pests and diseases before storage is easy with seeds.

  • Some plants can not be easily propagated vegetatively.
  • It controls spread of plant diseases that would be spread through infected vegetative plant parts


  • Grafting helps in propagating cloves which can not be propagated by other means
  • To take advantages of aged root stock i.e. stocks with desirable root characteristics are utilized
  • It makes the growing of more than one type of flower/fruit on one tree possible.
  • It helps to improve on the variety of plants
  • It may be used to repair the damaged trees
  • It reduces maturity period of crops
  • Grafting allows one to obtain special plant forms e.g Tree Roses.


A weed is a plant which grow in a place where it is not wanted
It is also unwanted plant in the garden or

It is a plant whose usefulness has not been discovered

Disadvantages of weeds

  • They are poisonous to animals and man e.g Sodom apple, tick berry
  • They lower the quality of farm produce e.g Black Jack seeds contaminate cotton Lint, Wild onions contaminate milk.
  • All terrestrial weeds compete with crops for Nutrients, water, light and space.
  • They grow among pastures hence reducing their palatability
  • Aquatic weeds block water ways and irrigation channels making irrigation difficult e.g – water hyacinth
  • The control of weeds through spraying using herbicides increases the costs of production
  • Weeds harbor pests and diseases of crops during the season
  • Weeds reduce the value of land e.g – Lantana
  • They are parasites to crops e.g – Striga hermontheca SPP in cotton
  • Under heavy infestation of crops by weeds, crops have a poor distribution and formation of roots.
  • Acquantic weeds reduce the amount of oxygen available for respiration of animals e.g fish, and other aquartic organism


Problems Facing Horticultural Farming in Kenya

  • Pests and diseases lower crop yields e.g. aphids, nematodes, birds, worms, rodents (pests); blight, black rot, bacterial wilt
  • Inefficient marketing system that lacks proper organization lead to rotting of produce

  • Stiff competition on the international market by other horticultural producers (Israel, Netherlands).
  • Price fluctuations due to overproduction results to marginal profits.
  • Climatic hazards (frost, hailstones, prolonged drought) that destroy the produce in the farms.
  • High freight charges and production costs that lead to marginal profits (due to hiked costs of farm inputs and airfares).
  • Seasonal floods that make the feeder roads impassable during the rainy season limits accessibility between the farms and collecting centres/leads to delay in delivery of the products.

  • Inadequate refrigeration facilities may lead to reduction in quality of highly perishable produce.


Dangers of over depending on the exportation of agricultural products and their solutions

The following are the dangers of over depending on the exportation of agricultural products

  • Price fluctuations on the world market cause unstable export earnings, hence reducing government earnings.
  • Agricultural products fetch low prices on the world market, which discourages farmers from growing crops for export.
  • Losses because of poor storage facilities, which reduce on the quality and quantity for export.

  • Agricultural products are seasonal and therefore can’t be relied on for a constant supply for export.
  • Most farmers are reluctant or have inadequate capital to adopt modern agricultural methods for export production.
  • Most agricultural areas are inaccessible which limits quick delivery for exportation.
Dangers of over depending on the exportation of agricultural products
  • Agricultural products are prone to climatic hazards e.g. hailstorms and long drought cause fluctuation of products for export.
  • Pests attack the crops leading to a reduction in quantity for export which reduces foreign exchange earnings.

  • Disease outbreaks also attack the crops leading to poor quality output which reduces market demand.
  • They are perishable and therefore require air transport which is expensive to transport to foreign markets for export.
  • Agricultural products are bulky and therefore difficult to handle for export.

Steps taken to solve the problems of overdependence on agricultural products for exportation

  • Widening the export market base by investing in market research and creation of new trade partners.
  • Reviving co-operative societies to improve on marketing of agricultural products for export.
  • Encouraging scientific research to improve on the quality and quantity of agricultural exports.
  • Improving handling and packaging of perishable agricultural export crops through reviving marketing boards and co-operatives.
  • Using pesticides and herbicides to control pests and diseases to improve on quality and quantity of export crops
Steps taken to solve the problems of overdependence on agricultural products for exportation
  • Encouraging the government to promote economic diversification to offer an alternative to the agro-based economy.
  • Liberalization of the economy to encourage private investment in the economy to foster economic development.

  • Diversification of the export sector and encourage exportation of other commodities e.g. timber, fish and minerals.
  • Developing export promotion industries to export manufactured goods with high market demand.
  • Promotion of tourism as an invisible export to bring in more foreign exchange for national development.
  • Promotion of exportation of services e.g. banking, transport, labour, education to widen tax base for government.
  • Educating and sensitizing the masses about the dangers of over-reliance on agriculture and offer alternatives for survival.
  • Exporting art and craft products to offer an alternative export item.
Steps taken to solve the problems of overdependence on agricultural products for exportation



Pyrethrum is a white flowering plant that contains a chemical substance used in insecticides. it is

Mainly grown in high altitude areas e.g. in Kenya along the slopes of Mt. Kenya, Aberdare ranges, Kikuyu land, and slopes of Mt. Kilimanjaro, Arusha, Mt. Meru, Mbeya, and Usambara ranges and Southern highlands in Tanzania.

Conditions for its growth of Pyrethrum

Fairly cool and moist conditions for plant growth

Pyrethrum is a cool-season crop that prefers temperatures ranging from 15 to 25 degrees Celsius. It is not tolerant of high temperatures, and prolonged exposure to temperatures above 30 degrees Celsius can damage the plants. Pyrethrum also requires a humid environment, with a relative humidity of at least 60%.

High altitude of about 1000m to 1800m above sea level to ensure cool conditions

Pyrethrum is typically grown at high altitudes, between 1000 and 1800 meters above sea level. This is because the higher altitudes provide cooler temperatures and more humidity, which are both ideal for pyrethrum growth.

Well drained and fertile loam soils for proper plant growth and high yields

Pyrethrum prefers well-drained and fertile loam soils. The soil should be deep and have a pH of 6.0 to 6.5. Pyrethrum is not tolerant of waterlogged soils, as this can lead to root rot.

Heavy and reliable rainfall of about 1500mm per annum for high yields of the crop

Pyrethrum requires a heavy and reliable rainfall of about 1500mm per annum. The rainfall should be evenly distributed throughout the year, as dry spells can damage the plants.

Cheap and abundant labor especially during the harvesting period

Pyrethrum is a labor-intensive crop, especially during the harvesting period. The flowers need to be harvested by hand, and this can be a time-consuming and labor-intensive process. Therefore, it is important to have a reliable source of cheap and abundant labor available during the harvesting season.

Well developed transport routes linking to industries since it’s grown in highland areas

Pyrethrum is typically grown in highland areas, which can make it difficult to transport the crop to processing facilities. Therefore, it is important to have well-developed transport routes in place to ensure that the crop can be transported efficiently and cost-effectively.

Extensive land for large scale growing to ensure high output

Pyrethrum can be grown on a small scale, but for high yields, it is best to grow it on an extensive scale. This means having a large area of land available for cultivation.

High humidity all year round for luxuriant growth of the crop

Pyrethrum requires high humidity all year round. This is because the high humidity helps to prevent the flowers from drying out and also helps to keep the pests and diseases at bay.

Abundant sunshine for ripening and harvesting of the crop

Pyrethrum requires abundant sunshine for ripening and harvesting. The flowers should be harvested when they are fully open and have a bright yellow color.

Supportive government policy to encourage plantation agriculture

Pyrethrum cultivation is a long-term investment, and it is important to have a supportive government policy in place to encourage plantation agriculture. This can include providing subsidies for farmers, investing in research and development, and promoting the crop to potential buyers.

Gently sloping landscape for easy movement of the workers

Pyrethrum cultivation is a labor-intensive crop, and it is important to have a gently sloping landscape for easy movement of the workers. This will help to reduce fatigue and injuries among the workers.

Ready market for the crop which is both local and international e.g. in China

Pyrethrum is a valuable crop, and there is a ready market for it both locally and internationally. The main markets for pyrethrum are China, India, and Europe.


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