How To Grow Groundnut in Nigeria

How To Grow Groundnut in Nigeria [Beginners Guide]

Groundnut is an important crop in Nigeria, as it is a valuable source of income for many small-scale farmers. Growing groundnut in Nigeria is relatively easy and can provide a good harvest if done correctly.

In order to successfully grow groundnuts, it is important to select the farming site, prepare the soil, purchase and prepare seeds, plant, water and fertilizer application, mulch and weed control, and harvest the matured nuts

A successful groundnut crop can be harvested in Nigeria with the right practice and approach.

How To Grow Groundnut in Nigeria

The essence of this article is to guide you on how to grow groundnut in Nigeria. Therefore, we have compiled all the necessary steps and processes that you need to follow to successfully grow your groundnut in Nigeria.

Step 1: Select the Farming Site

When it comes to growing groundnut, you must consider all these factors when selecting the right farming site.

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Soil Property

Groundnut cultivation requires loamy soil that is well-drained and has good fertility. The soil should have a pH level between 5.5 and 7.5 and should be free of weeds and disease.

Climate Property

Groundnut cultivation needs a warm and humid climate with temperatures between 20 and 30°C. The crop requires adequate sunshine and a few hours of rainfall each week.


The selected farming site should be close to markets for the sale of produce. This will minimize transportation costs and help ensure the timely delivery of the crop.

Road Accessibility

The farming site should be easily accessible by road, as this makes it easier for farmers to transport their produce to the market.

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Groundnut cultivation requires sufficient water for irrigation during the dry season. The selected site should be close to a reliable source of water for irrigation.

Step 2. Prepare the soil

Preparing the land for growing groundnut in Nigeria involves several steps, including removing existing vegetation and debris, harrowing, tilling and plowing, incorporating compost and organic fertilizer, making farm beds, and water management.

Harrowing, tilling, and plowing the soil loosens it and breaks up compaction, allowing for better water infiltration, root growth, and aeration, which are all important for groundnut production.

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Compost should be incorporated in the top layer of soil and should be worked into the soil evenly. Organic fertilizers, such as manure and animal waste, should also be incorporated to improve soil fertility and provide essential nutrients for groundnut growth. Farm beds should be created in an east-west direction to maximize sunlight exposure and should be at least 30 cm high.

Step 3: Purchase and Prepare Seed

The vendor chosen must be reputable, reliable, and experienced in the specific types of seed and growing methods used in Nigeria. It is important to ensure that the seed is from a reliable source and has been grown in the same climate and soil conditions as the intended planting area.

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Also, there are several types of groundnuts available, including the traditional African variety, which are larger, and the improved varieties, which are smaller but have higher yields.

Once the desired seed is identified, farmers should store it in a cool, dry place. The seed should be soaked in water for 24 to 48 hours before planting. This helps to break the dormancy period and encourages the germination of the seed. After soaking, the seed should be dried on a clean, dry surface before planting.

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Step 4. Plant the Nuts

The seedlings should be planted at a depth of 2-3 inches and should be spaced 8-10 inches apart. After planting, the soil should be watered regularly to ensure proper growth. It is also important to keep the area weed-free to prevent competition for nutrients.

Step 5. Watering

Groundnuts require regular watering to ensure the proper growth of the plants and the development of their pods. Watering should be done in the early morning or late evening when the sun is not at its hottest. Water the plants deeply, so that the water reaches the root zone. It is best to allow the soil to dry out between waterings, to prevent the soil from being overflooded.

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Step 6: Fertilizer Application

Fertilizer should be applied at the beginning of the growing season when the plants are about 6 inches tall. Apply a balanced fertilizer at a rate of one pound per 100 square feet of soil.

Water the soil after the fertilizer is applied, to help the nutrients absorb into the soil. Reapply fertilizer every three months during the growing season. Fertilize your groundnuts with a high-nitrogen fertilizer every 2-3 weeks throughout the growing season.

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Step 7. Mulching and Weed Control

Mulching helps to reduce weed growth by creating an environment that is unfavorable for weed growth. It also helps to conserve soil moisture by reducing evaporation, which is beneficial for the growth of groundnut. Organic mulches such as straw, grass clippings, and hay can be used. Plastic mulches are also commonly used, as they are effective at suppressing weeds and conserving soil moisture.

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Weed control can also be achieved through mechanical means, such as hoeing or hand weeding. Hoeing is a labor-intensive activity, as it requires manual labor to remove weeds. Hand weeding is also laborious, but it is more precise and can be used to selectively remove weeds without damaging the crop.

Herbicides can also be used to control weeds in groundnut. However, they must be used with caution, as they can have a detrimental effect on the environment.

Step 8. Harvest

Groundnuts can be harvested after about 120-140 days. The pods should be left on the plant until they are mature and have developed a red color. The pods should be harvested carefully to prevent damage.

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When the groundnuts are ready to harvest, dig them up and dry them in the sun. Once the nuts are dry, store them in an airtight container and place in a cool, dry area.

Variety of Groundnuts in Nigeria

Nigeria grows different varieties of groundnuts, but the most common ones are the Spanish and Valencia varieties. These two varieties are preferred due to their high yield potential and resistance to pests and diseases.

Groundnuts Prices in Nigeria

The price of groundnuts in Nigeria varies depending on the season, location, and market demand. On average, a kilogram of groundnuts in Nigeria is sold for about 200-300 Nigerian Naira, which is roughly 50-75 cents in US dollars.

Best Agronomic Practices for Growing Groundnuts in Nigeria

To maximize the yield and quality of groundnuts in Nigeria, you need to engage in the following best agronomic practices:

  • Land preparation: Prepare the land by plowing, harrowing, and ridging to create a suitable seedbed for planting.
  • Seed selection: Use certified seed that is free from pests and diseases to ensure high germination rates and crop vigor.
  • Planting: Plant the seeds at a spacing of 30cm by 10cm in rows and ensure adequate soil moisture for optimal germination.
  • Weeding: Control weeds by hand weeding or using herbicides to prevent competition for nutrients and water.
  • Fertilizer application: Apply the right amount of fertilizer to the soil based on soil analysis to ensure proper nutrient supply.
  • Disease and pest management: Monitor the crop regularly and apply the appropriate control measures to manage diseases and pests.
  • Harvesting: Harvest the crop at the right maturity stage, dry the pods in the sun, and store them in a dry place to prevent aflatoxin contamination.

Projected Profit of Groundnuts in Nigeria

The projected profit of groundnuts in Nigeria varies depending on the yield, market demand, and production costs. On average, a farmer can expect to earn between 40,000-80,000 Nigerian Naira per hectare (roughly 100-200 USD) after deducting production costs.

Common Diseases and Pests of Groundnuts in Nigeria

Groundnuts in Nigeria are susceptible to several diseases and pests, including:

  • Groundnut rosette disease: This disease is caused by a virus and leads to stunted growth, yellowing, and distortion of leaves. The best control measures include planting disease-resistant varieties, removing infected plants, and controlling aphids, which spread the virus.
  • Leaf spots: This is caused by fungal infections and leads to the development of yellow or brown spots on leaves. To control this disease, apply fungicides, practice crop rotation, and maintain proper plant nutrition.
  • Cutworms: These are caterpillars that cut seedlings at the base and cause wilting. Control measures include using insecticides and applying biological control agents such as Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt).
  • Termites: These pests feed on the underground parts of the plant, causing significant damage. Control measures include applying insecticides or using biological control agents such as entomopathogenic fungi.
  • Aflatoxin contamination: This is a fungal toxin that occurs in groundnuts stored under warm and humid conditions. To control aflatoxin contamination, dry the harvested groundnuts properly, store them in a cool and dry place, and regularly inspect them for signs of mold.

Different Propagation Methods of Groundnuts

Groundnuts are propagated using the following methods:

  • Seeds: Propagate groundnuts using certified seeds that are free from pests and diseases.
  • Cuttings: Groundnuts can be propagated using stem cuttings taken from healthy plants.
  • Runner propagation: This method involves burying the runners produced by the plant and allowing them to form new roots and develop into new plants. However, runner propagation is less common than seed propagation in Nigeria as it takes longer and requires more labor.

It is worth noting that in Nigeria, groundnuts are mostly propagated using seeds. The seeds are planted directly in the field during the planting season. However, the use of cuttings and runner propagation can be useful in situations where seed availability is limited.

Price Of Groundnut In Nigeria

The price of groundnut in Nigeria varies depending on the time of year and location. Generally, groundnut prices range from ₦150 to ₦200 per kilogram. Prices tend to be higher during harvest season and lower during the off-season.

Land Preparation For Groundnut

Land should be ploughed and harrowed several times to create a fine tilth and remove weeds. Ridges should be formed by harrowing and the seed should be planted at a depth of 2-3 cm. Fertilizers should be applied and lightly incorporated into the soil. Irrigation should be provided if necessary.

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Types Of Groundnut In Nigeria

Below are the types of groundnut you will find in Nigeria.

Virginia Peanut

This is the most popular type of peanut in Nigeria and it is also the type most often used for cooking.

Valencia Peanut

This type of peanut is smaller in size and is often used for snacks and snack preparation.

Spanish Peanut

This is a larger, oval-shaped peanut, which is often used for making peanut butter.

Runner Peanut

This is the smallest type of peanut and is often used for garnishing and decorations.

Chinese Peanut

This type of peanut has a slightly sweet flavor and is often used for making sauces and marinades.

How To Plant Groundnuts

You can successfully grow groundnuts following the steps highlighted below.

Step 1. Till the soil to a depth of 6-8 inches.

Step 2. Spread a 2-3 inch layer of compost on the soil.

Step 3. Dig 1-inch deep holes spaced 4-6 inches apart.

Step 4. Place 4-5 groundnut seeds in each hole and cover with soil.

Step 5. Water the groundnuts to keep the soil moist.

Step 6. Thin the seedlings to one per hole when they reach 2-3 inches tall.

Step 7. Fertilize the groundnuts every 4-6 weeks.

Step 8. Harvest the groundnuts when the vines turn yellow and the nuts are hard.

Groundnut Farming Profit

Groundnut farming can be a very profitable venture for the right farmer. The profits from groundnut farming depend on a variety of factors, such as the size of the farm, the quality of the soil, and the types of harvesting and processing methods used.

Generally, groundnut farming is more profitable in areas with good soil and a relatively long growing season. The most important factor in determining the profitability of groundnut farming is the price of the nuts.

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The price of groundnuts varies widely depending on the market and time of year, but typically ranges from $0.40 to $1.50 per pound. The higher the price per pound, the higher the potential profits.

Another factor to consider is the cost of inputs such as seeds, fertilizer, and labor. Input costs can vary widely depending on the region but typically range from $400 to $2,000 per acre. The higher the input costs, the lower the potential profits.

Hybrid Groundnut Seeds In Nigeria

Hybrid groundnut seeds have become increasingly popular in Nigeria due to their higher yields and better taste. These seeds are developed through cross-pollination of two different varieties of groundnuts, resulting in a higher yield, improved disease and pest resistance, and improved taste. Hybrid groundnut seeds have revolutionized the Nigerian groundnut industry, leading to increased production and profit.

Planting Date Of Groundnut In Nigeria

In Nigeria, the ideal planting date for groundnut is usually between mid-June and late July.

What Causes Reduction In Groundnut Production In Nigeria

Reduction in groundnut production in Nigeria is caused by over-exploitation of land, use of poor quality seed, inadequate fertilizer, lack of improved technologies, and limited extension services. Other factors include climate change, pest and disease infestations, and inadequate access to markets.

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How To Grow Groundnut In Nigeria

Step 1. Select a sunny location with well-drained soil.

Step 2. Plant seeds 2-3 inches deep and 3-4 inches apart in rows.

Step 3. Water regularly and mulch to help soil retain moisture.

Step 4. Fertilize with a balanced NPK fertilizer.

Step 5. Control weeds by hoeing and hand weeding.

Step 6. Harvest when pods have turned yellow and have started to dry.

How To Plant Groundnut In Nigeria


Step 1. Prepare the soil: Till the soil to about 8-12 inches deep and add organic matter.

Step 2. Sow seeds: Sow the groundnut seeds 1 inch deep in rows that are spaced 2-3 feet apart.

Step 3. Water the plants: Water the groundnut plants regularly and deeply.

Step 4. Apply fertilizer: Apply a balanced fertilizer at planting time and then again at midseason.

Step 5. Weed control: Control weeds by hand weeding or using an appropriate herbicide.

Step 6. Harvest: Harvest when the groundnuts are mature and the leaves are beginning to yellow.

Where Is Groundnut Grown In Nigeria

Groundnuts are grown in several states across Nigeria, including Kano, Kaduna, Gombe, Yobe, Jigawa, Kebbi, Sokoto, and Zamfara.

How To Grow Groundnut At Home

Step 1. Purchase groundnut seeds from a local nursery or online.

Step 2. Plant the groundnut seeds 1 to 2 inches deep and 4 inches apart in a sunny location.

Step 3. Water the seeds and keep the soil moist but not wet.

Step 4. Add a layer of mulch around the planting area to conserve moisture.

Step 5. Fertilize the plants when they reach 6 inches in height.

Step 6. Watch for the groundnut pods to form after the flowers have bloomed.

Step 7. Harvest the groundnuts when the pods begin to dry and turn brown.

How Much Time Does Groundnut Take To Grow

Groundnut takes between 90 and 120 days to reach full maturity.

How Many Days For Groundnut To Grow

Groundnut plants typically take 80-120 days to reach maturity.

How Profitable Is Groundnut Farming In Nigeria

Groundnut farming is a highly profitable venture in Nigeria, with an estimated income of up to $2,000 per hectare. The crop is widely consumed in the country, providing an abundant and affordable source of protein and oil.

Also, groundnuts are also used to produce high-value peanut butter, and other value-added products. This makes it an attractive crop for farmers, as it has the potential to generate high returns.


To successfully grow groundnut in Nigeria, you should ensure that their soil is well-drained and well-fertilized, select the right variety for their climate and soil, and practice proper crop rotation and pest management methods. You should use irrigation when necessary and provide adequate space for the groundnuts to spread. With proper management, you can produce a successful crop.

Author: David

David is a Kenyan farmer from the rural village of Nairobi. Growing up, he was surrounded by the beauty of the Kenyan countryside, which sparked his passion for farming. After completing his education, he decided to pursue a career in agriculture and has since dedicated his life to providing food for his local community. David is an experienced farmer and is experienced in a range of agricultural practices, including crop rotation, animal husbandry and soil management. He is passionate about promoting sustainable agriculture and is actively working to reduce food insecurity in his community.

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