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International Society for Horticultural Science

Horticulture Research International

Ghana

Climate
The climate is tropical, the eastern coastal belt is warm and comparatively dry, the southwest corner is hot and humid and the north is hot and dry. Annual temperatures range from 26.1 °C in places near the coast to 28.9 °C in the extreme north.
Generally, rainfall in Ghana decreases from south to north. The wettest area is the extreme southwest where rainfall is over 2000 mm per annum. In the extreme north, the annual rainfall is less than 1100 mm. Two main regimes of rainfall distribution are found in Ghana. The first is the double maximum regime occurring south of latitude 8,30° N. The two maximum periods are from May to August and from September to October. The single maximum regime is found north of latitude 8,30° N, where there is only one rainy season from May to October followed by a long dry season; November to May.
The land is generally below 600 m. The lowest lying areas occur in the middle Volta basin and in a broad belt along the coast. The major soils found in the country include; oxysols, ochrosols, groundwater laterites, tropical black and grey earths and several intergrades of the major soils.

Geography
Ghana falls within latitude 4,44° S and 11,11° N and longitude 3,11° W and 1,11° E. There are six main ecological zones defined on the basis of climate, vegetation and soils. These are the: Rainforest, Semi-deciduous forest, Transitional zone, Coastal savanna, Northern or Guinea savanna and the Sahel.

Horticulture
Four main horticultural enterprises can be found in Ghana. These are vegetable crop production, fruit crop production, landscape horticulture, and floriculture and nursery stock production.

Distribution of Horticulture
Production of exotic (European) vegetables such as lettuce, cabbage, cauliflower, onion, spinach, tomato, carrot, French bean, turnip, cucumber, beet, and radish is concentrated in and around the principal towns and cities of the country. The bulk of local vegetable crops such as tomato, hot pepper, egg plant, okra, onion and shallots is produced in the rural areas.
Fruit crops such as pineapple, citrus, banana, pawpaw , mango and avocado are grown commercially mainly along the coastal savanna and rainforest zones of the country.
Many institutions and other private individuals practise landscape horticulture. The practice of floriculture and nursery stock production is in the hands of institutions and some private sector concerns.

Research Thrusts
The two main institutions engaged in horticultural research include research institutes under the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), and the Universities.

Nature of Institutes
Horticultural research in the recent past is demand-driven and is targeted primarily at crops with high export potential. Under the National Agricultural Research Project (NARP), research programs on plantain, pineapple, other fruit crops (citrus, mango), vegetable crops (tomato, pepper, egg plant, okra, leafy vegetables and onion are currently being undertaken by multi-disciplinary scientists from the above-mentioned institutions.

Organisations / Institutes:
Ministry of Food and Agriculture (Ghana)
Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)
University of Ghana
Nkrumah University of Science and Technology
University of Developmental Studies (Tamale, Ghana)
University of Cape Coast, Ghana


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