Sat. Jun 25th, 2022

Nutmeg farming

Did you know that half the world’s supply of nutmeg is from Indonesia?. It is referred to as
( Myristica fragrans), and grows in warm humid climate. Perfect soil conditions for growth is sandy loam, red laterite  or clay loamy soil. To grow the tree make sure the farm has good drainage and avoid waterlogged areas.

Nutmeg farming
Nutmeg farming

What is nutmeg

Nutmeg is a hard aromatic seed of a tropical plant. The spherical looking nut is actually the seed of the trees fruit once dried for 6 to 8 weeks it is sold whole or ground into powdery form.

Uses of nutmeg

The seed has many culinary uses, it is an ingredient in doughnuts, cakes, biscuits, and used to season dishes. It is added to meat, soup, sausages or used as a preservative.

Nutmeg farming: nutmeg farming guide

In this short guide we will cover planting, types of insects that damage the plant, diseases, land preparation and harvesting.


Cross-pollination is the process through which nutmeg tree germinate. A single tree produces 100 to 10,000 fruits, while propagating is challenging because it is difficult to differentiate male from female seeds. Over half of male seed trees fail to produce fruit, therefore a common method used by farmers is grafting. They adopt vegetable propagation with better results.

Commercial farmers use Epicotyl grafting method to propagate the tree. The farmer harvests healthy fruits then uses the seeds extracted from pericarp and sown into sand beds.

They space them L 1 x 1.5 m W x 15 cm H, and water regularly. Germination occurs in one month while 20 days old sprouts are transplanted into polythene bags that have a mixture of soil, sand and cow dung in the ratio (3:3:1).

Insect pests and disease

There are many pests that attack the nutmeg tree. Common pests are Shield scale, White scale, Black scale. Disease that affect nutmeg are
Shot hole, Fruit rot, Thread blight, Die back disease.


  1. Shield scale
  2. White scale
  3. Black scale


  1. Shot hole
  2. Fruit rot
  3. Thread blight
  4. Die back disease

Preparation of land and planting

Planting is done in rainy season, dig 0.8 m x 0.8 m x 0.8 m apply manure into shallow holes and space 8.5 m x 8.5 m. Used organic manure and space grafting 5m x 5m with one male graft to 19 female graft. Make sure it is protected from direct sunlight and introduce intercrop system.

Harvesting nutmeg

The tree bares fruit in 5 to 8 years and lives about 35 years. When the pericarp splits open usually around June to August, it is time for harvesting. To reach the nut the outer fleshy part is removed and mace separated. The nutmeg is dried through mechanical process at 40 degrees centigrade for 6 to 8 hours for 3 days.

Overview of world nutmeg market

Indonesia account for 78.8 million usd while China had 35 million usd (2017) share of global market. In Europe the trade of nutmeg has seen a significant reduction in imports.

Questions and Answers

How long does it take nutmeg to grow?

It takes 180 days after planting

How many nutmeg trees can be planted in an acre?

An acre can take 60 plants

Is nutmeg hard to grow?

With good soil, watering and ideal conditions it is easy to grow.

What is the yield of nutmeg?

8000- 10, 000 nuts per tree

By Femi

webmaster with passion for good content