NAADS supports the production and distribution of quality citrus seedlings tolerant to pests and diseases and with desirable fresh and processing characteristics. The citrus seedlings are being provided to meet the commercialization objective of the Government of Uganda.
Since 2014/15, NAADS has distributed over 40 million citrus seedlings to farmers in citrus growing district local governments.
- Oranges grow over a wide range of soils but light, well drained, sandy soils are the most ideal.
- For good production, oranges require well distributed rainfall or supplementary irrigation throughout the year.
- A good source of water is therefore essential in orange farming.
- Water requirements vary according to weather conditions, but as a whole the ideal range is between 450mm to 2,700mm per year.
- Oranges can be grown from altitudes as low as 200m above sea level.
- Areas of low humidity are most ideal.
- Such climate is important for reduced disease intensity and for acquiring good orange color.
- A dry hot day, cool at night climate also favors good color development.
- Citrus requires temperature ranges from 130C – 350
- Optimum temperature is 25 – 350
- Extremely high temperatures may be harmful especially during flowering or if cool temperatures are followed by a hot period.
- Damage occurs in the form of flower, fruit or leaf drop.
- Wind can also cause serious damage to orange trees and fruits.
- Hot dry wind will often scorch trees by drying young leaves.
- Winds of high speeds will scar fruits and cause fruit drop.
- Where winds are a problem, wind brake shelters should be planted.
- Washington navel, which is suitable for direct eating as a table fruit. The fruit is seedless. It matures early in the season.
- Valencia, with a lot of juice and therefore sustainable for juice extraction. This cultivar matures late in the season and this is advantageous. The juice has high soluble solids and a rough skin.
- Hamlin, which has good extraction properties. It is a small fruit with a smooth and shiny skin.
- Others include Kuno navel, Nova, Minneola and American tangerine.