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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Zimbabwean government warns of tough
agricultural season amid erratic rains 

The Zimbabwean government has warned that the 2018-19 agricultural season will be a tough one with farmers having so far failed to adequately make land preparations and to plant crops because of erratic rains throughout the country.

Besides the season setting in late, many parts of the country have received little rains with heavy thunderstorms here and there which have in some cases left people without shelter.

The state-controlled Herald newspaper reported Saturday that Lands, Agriculture, Water and Climate Minister Perrance Shiri said in a statement that the prevailing weather conditions had adversely affected land preparations, planting and job opportunities for casual laborers.

He advised farmers to plant small grains that are drought resistant and provide supplementary feeding to livestock, among other precautionary measures.

The official urged farmers to plant small grains, saying that there would be a 35 percent chance of below normal rains, a 40 percent chance of normal rains and 25 percent chance of above normal during the January to March 2019 period.

He urged farmers in some regions to consider short season maize varieties to increase chances of getting harvests.

A forecast produced by the Southern African Regional Climate Outlook Forum shows most Sadc countries are likely to receive “normal to below-normal” rainfall for the period October 2018 to March 2019 with the exception of Tanzania.

             

 

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