FLOWERS AND ORNAMENTAL GARDENING
Flower production and ornamental gardening in Nigeria
Horticulture is a branch of agriculture that deals with the cultivation of garden crops, fruits, vegetables and ornamental plants. It deals with the growing and propagation of exotic ornamental plants which aside beautifying the environment, also purifies the environment, and removes toxic air pollutants therein, replacing them with pristine oxygen for humans and animals to thrive. It plays an important role in the development of healthy living, promotes the outlook of community and enhances the economic and social values of the community
Floriculture, which is the science and practice of growing, harvesting, storing, designing and marketing ornamental plants. It also involves the intensive production of flowers and ornamental shrubs. Although this two can be used interchangeably but still there is a slight difference. Horticulture deals with the scientific principles related to the cultivation of garden and ornamental plants, floriculture on the other hand is a part of horticulture which is the study of growing and marketing flowers. The difference is clear.
Demand of flowers and ornamentals in Nigeria
Everything about flowers brings joy in all occasion, no wonder many have grasp the opportunity of doing the business without looking back. The business of flower is highly lucrative and in high demand not only in Nigeria. Kenya is one of the country in Africa that is making cool cash and capital from the business. Nigeria is trying but a lot still needs to be done. Awareness and sensitization has to be done so that youth and more interested people can come into the place of flower production.
Flowers can be used for varieties of things and over the years a lot of emotion has emanated from the use of flowers, while some believe that flowers can be used for decoration and beautification some believe that it can be used to convey different emotion like love, hate, beauty and many more. Nigerian lovers will never go a day without the use of flowers for wedding proposals, birthdays and even death anniversary.
Flower demand is high at a minimal percentage, At least for example we are sure all churches use flowers for beautification, all event center uses flower for beautification, all celebration uses flowers for beautification.
A lot of horticulturist and floriculturist have complained at one point or the other in their chosen career, some complained of water supply issues, some complained of poor infrastructure, while some issues are market and profitability.
Presently Nigeria is not one of the 30 producing company. Top ten major flower producing countries in the world during 2018 are The Netherland (52%), Columbia (15%), Ecuador (9%), Kenya (7%), Belgium (3%), Ethiopia (2%), Malaysia, Italy, Germany, Israel (1%) of global market share.
POTENTIAL REVENUE ESTIMATE IN ORNAMENTAL GARDENING AND FLOWER PRODUCTION
Some group of people came together to check for the profitability of flower production in southwest Nigeria.
This estimate of cost and return shows that total variable cost was 307411.75 which represents 97.40% of total cost while total fixed was only 8208.52 (2.60%). The total revenue amounted to 488006.21. The gross margin and net profit of 180594.46 and 172385.94 were realized respectively. The Rate of return on investment was 0.55, indicating that for every naira invested in the business 55kobo is realized which more than 50% the amount invested. Gross ratio was less than 1 i.e 0.65 indicating that the business is solvent. All the indicators show that the business is profitable in the region.
The study established that ornamental plant production was a profitable venture in the geo-political zone. In spite of this, ornamental plant business is still face with some major constraints like water scarcity, lack of permanent site for production and inadequate fund. Addressing these challenges will further increase the income generated from the business. Based on the findings, the study recommended that government should allocate land for ornamental plant production practice in form of “horticulture village”. And this will also solve the problem of water scarcity during dry season because the florists will be able to sink well or borehole. With this study, it is sure that ornamental plants are profitable if more people can get involved and solve the basic problem of production.
WHY IS GOVERNMENT INTERESTED IN ORNAMENTAL GARDENING AND FLOWER PRODUCTION
Government created NIHORT with headquarters in Ibadan was established in 1975 with the assistance of United Nations Development Programme in conjunction with food and Agricultural Organization as fruits and vegetables research and demonstration centre. It acquired the status of a national institute in June 1976.The Institute’s headquarter is situated on a 350 hectares of land at Jericho Reservation Area, Idi-Ishin, Ibadan, in the rainforest agro-ecological zone of South Western Nigeria. To give a national outlook, the institute has two substations located in Mbato-Okigwe, Imo state in South Eastern Nigeria and the other at Bagauda, Kano state.
Their mission is to develop sustainable production and utilization of horticultural crops in order to achieve excellence in fruits, vegetables, spices, ornamentals as well as aromatic plant research in Nigeria. The institute has the mandate to conduct research into genetic improvement, production, processing, storage, utilization and marketing of tropical fruits, vegetables, spices and ornamentals plants of both nutritional and economic importance.
This institution still serve their purpose to make sure exportation and production of ornamental plant remain in focus of the government.
Government is interested in ornamental gardening and flower production because they are aware of it positive effect on the improvement in agriculture and the nation at large.
PROS AND CONS OF THE BUSINESS
The business is lucrative and profitable, we have to look at the pros and cons of this business, what are the code to being successful?
Understand the cons of ornamental Plant.
Some can be poisonous, Nature has given some plants protection from animals through poisonous foliage. Lily of the valley is a pleasantly scented, spring perennial. Digestive upset can occur if the foliage of lily of the valley is eaten.
Some produces Allergies, Plants produce pollen in the spring, summer and sometimes fall to make seeds for next year’s growth. Pollen is a leading cause of seasonal allergies, which, for sufferers, is a strong disadvantage to having flowers. Common flowers like sunflower can cause terrible allergy attacks, and, if left untreated, can lead to severe discomfort.
They require Timely Maintenance Flowers require routine maintenance to keep them looking their best. You will need to devote enough time each week to pruning and deadheading, a process that eliminates spent blooms to conserve the plant’s energy. The flowers will also need water each day to several days, and a fertilizer treatment one to three times per month.
Costly Investment: Flowers are available in different sizes and cultivars, each priced for value and endurance. For example, perennials (flowers that return each year) would cost more than annuals (flowers that live, bloom and die within one growing season). In comparison, a flower that is expected to spread and multiply rapidly would cost more than one that takes years to expand and progress in size.
The pros of the business
They are lucrative
They have visual appeal
They are Natural Air Purifiers
They are used to control erosion
They are used for beautification
With all of this, it is sure that if ornamental business is concentrated on by the interested people it will not alone beautify our bank account it will also beautify our nation development.
HOW TO START IT (MATERIALS NEEDED FOR SETTING UP THE GARDENING, AN EXAMPLARY GUIDE TO STARTING).
Consider the following when starting ornamental production
Location: ornamentals require attention and this can’t be overlooked, they can be grown indoor and outdoor, they are garden plant which can be grown in landscaping around buildings.
Soils for ornamental production: ornamentals does not strive in poorly drained soils because they are liable to plant disease, clayey soil will suffocate the root and kill the flower, the surrounding must be friendly, it must be plastic content and chemical free. In any extreme case of poorly drained soil prepare a bed of well-drained soil.
Selection of plant: this depends on soil draining capacity level and the PH level. Selection also depends on the climatic condition of the environment. Get your ornamental seeds from trustworthy organizations like NIHORT. Get an expert that will give helping hands at all difficult planting phase. Ornamental plant ideal temperature is 25 – 35 degree.
Water management: Ornamentals require medium watering, most ornamentals require water than the other.
Materials needed include bucket, bowls, fertilizers, constant water supply, proper infrastructure, greenhouse, constant power and many more. Ornamentals are lucrative, they have their difficulties and research organizations are working
To make sure it is more productive than any other sector. Government have establish different research institution that work for the development of production and exportation of ornamental. The business needs the help of expert for better and effective production. Prepare the soil, get a good location, get the best plant and seed for profitable production.