The vanilla bean has very specific sun and shade requirements that benefit the environment – especially in places like Uganda, where the forest has been decimated. Cultivation or growing of vanilla requires tutor trees for the vines to grow so it can be grown along with other crops like Cocoa.
Before I show you how to grow vanilla I have to give you a little warning. Vanilla is very addictive. Once you try it out, you'll never leave it alone because there are good years when you earn pretty good money.
There are also years when you lose
everything. This is usually due to the disease called vissarion. This disease
kills the roots of the crop. However, if you do what I tell you to do, then you
will not have problems with this disease and your vanilla vines will grow as they are meant to.
A vanilla plant is an orchid which means it will climb other trees usually up to the top. If the tree is 30 to 40 meters tall a vanilla vine will grow to the very top of that tree.
If you allow the vanilla plant to climb to the top, then you will not be able to get it down. So today you are going to learn how to plant and grow a vanilla flag.
Planting a vanilla vine in your vanilla garden in Uganda
First you have to cut a bind. You have to make sure the line is healthy and free of disease. But before you cut any binds you have to see if there is a waxing moon or a waning moon which is just after the whole moon of course you know better than me about the effects of the moon on agriculture.
If you are in a waxing moon don't touch the vanilla. But how are you going to know if it's waxing if you don't have calendars? Well, that’s simple just grab a leaf and bend it. If you're in a waxing moon the leaf will snap broken!
The waning moon is three days after the full moon and lasts for 10 days. Here the leaf does not snap when bend. The vine will take root. You will now cut off the tip of the vine since you usually lose it anyway.
After that, you need to choose a Tudor tree so the vines can grow from and climb up. The best Tudor tree is Coco. However, we other trees we use to help support the vanilla to climb up.
Another very important thing to note is that vanilla doesn't grow in the soil. It grows on top of the soil. This is very important. Do not plant vanilla below the soil.
Now you will have to prepare the soil before planting the vanilla vine. Remove all the weeds and clear the surface of the soil and dig a little pearl. But how do you know which end of the vanilla vine to put up and which end to put down? Now, where the leaves connect to the vine the armpits should point up and the other end is down.
Do not plant vanilla under the soil. After that, you will need to cover the vine with dry leaves and break them up into smaller pieces. Leave the two tips of the vine uncovered. This way microbes won't get into the vine and it won't rot.