Coffee Board of Kenya Monthly Bulletins April 1979

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Kumar D.
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In an attempt to make irrigation application to coffee in Kenya meaningful and economic, this work has been carried out. First of all the soil moisture, which limits the two important plant processes viz., photosynthesis and absorption of minerals by coffee, has been investigated. It has been observed that upto 50 % field capacity both the processes proceed almost normally.Field trials also confirmed this finding.Therefore,it has been suggested that irrigation is not needed until the soil moisture drops down to this level which, in terms of soil moisture deficit, may be 6" (150 mm).Next, in order to have better performance by coffee trees d uring the hot dry season foliar application of N and Zn has been suggested.A rich supply of these elements has been found to make trees resist drought better than otherwise.Foliar application should be carried out before the onset of the dry season.Nitrogen can either be applied to the ground,but in that case trees must be irrigated if it does not rain soon after the application.
Monthly bulletin, 44 (517)