LATE planted crops still have a chance of surviving as the rainfall season will go as far as April, the Meteorological Services Department - Agromet section has said. This, however, would depend on the crop and its variety. Farmers are concerned over past dry spells that affected their late planted crops. There are, however, areas that have crops that have been completely destroyed.
Senior meteorological officer Mr Elliot Thomas said crops planted in December and January still have a fair chance of surviving.
"The current rains and forecast rains during the next two weeks will see most crops fairing well. However, activities like weeding and fertiliser application are being affected by incessant rainfall," he said.
Mr Thomas said from climatology, the season ends around mid-March with a variability of three weeks.
"Water requirements vary from crop to crop and even among varieties so farmers should always consult with Agritex for advice on agronomic practices," he said.
Mr Thomas said farmers could get agromet bulletins if they subscribe with the Meteorological Services Department.
"Farmers are urged to listen to our day-to-day weather forecasts and also to subscribe to our agromet bulletins which give advice on what activities are possible for the next two weeks," he said.
Zimbabwe Farmers Union second vice president Mr Berean Mukwende said planting summer crops late had always brought problems to farmers.
"We always advise farmers to plant early because planting from mid-January onwards will result in low yields.
"Days become shorter as we move towards winter and there will not be enough sunlight for adequate plant growth and development," he said.
Mr Mukwende said the planting time also depended with the type of crop.
"Sugarbeans, potatoes and other horticultural crops may do well even when planted in January," he said.