Temperature: Adaptable to the hot- lowland tropics. Prefers growth under 25-29C. Growth stops when temperature goes below 10C. Casssava is frost-sensitive.
Altitude: Sea-level to 2000 m.
Daylength: Short days promote root enlargement.
Post Planting Treatments
Soils containing less than 0.06% of exchangeable K should be supplied with 90-120 kg/Ha of K2O. Excessive N applications will promote foliage growth at the expense of root production. An urea application of 100-150 kg/Ha is recommended at post-planting time if N deficiency symptoms are observed in the foliage.
"Bitter" and "Sweet" are the two general types of cassava. The "Sweet" type is more commonly grown due to its greater yields. Colors and texture of the root peeling is often the only factor used in separating clones in the market.
Name: Manihot esculenta Crantz, cassava, yuca (Spanish), mandioca (portuguese), tapioca, manioc (french).
Bacterial blight (Xanthomonas manihotis). Control by using disease-free cuttings and by using tolerant cultivars. Also controlled by delaying planting toward end of rainy season. Also controlled with foliar applications of Pseudomonas fluorescens and P. putida strains (4 times per month) in Colombia.
Brown leaf spot (Cercospora henningsii). Use resistant or tolerant cultivars.
Weeds are best controlled through a proper rotation scheme and with proper pre-planting cultivation to prevent germination of weeds. Pre-emergence herbicides are very effective to control weeds in cassava. Weeding is recommended at 4-5 weeks after planting and at 8 weeks after planting until crop ground-cover is complete.
Type of soil
Grows well under a wide range of soils but prefers porous, friable soils with some organic matter content and depth of 30-40 cm.
Drainage requirements. Will not survive extended waterlogged conditions.
Nutritional Profile of Soil. Prefers soils with pH between 6-7, and clay content < 18% Will not tolerate saline conditions. Depending on cultivars, high yields of cassava can be obtained with pH values as low as 4.5 with 60% exchangeable Al3+ present.
Land for cassava cultiation is first ploughed and then harrowed or disked. Thereafter the cassava may be planted on the flat, on ridges, or in furrows. For furrows, make them 10 cm deep, and place the cuttings horizontally in the direction of the furrow. In areas where drainage is a problem, the land is heaped in mounds or ridges, and the cassava is planted on the crest.
Classification: thick root, brown skin, white tissue. The root should be 150-250 mm (6-10 in) long. Pre-cooling: Pre-cool with hydrocooler or with forced air. Sensitive to bruising during handling. Transport in highway and piggyback trailers and van containers. Transport and storage life-time = 1-2 months.
Expected yield per acre (based upon specific planting density). About 30 MT at a density of 10,375 plants/ha.
Timing based upon yields. 12 months after planting.
Maturity Indices (days, etc.)
Cassava can be harvested more or less whenever it is needed beginning about 7 months after harvest (MAH). Harvest at 7-16 MAP. Cultivars and climate influence maturity of cassava. The early types mature at about 6 MAP. The greatest yields are achieved at about 9-12 MAP. Prolonged maturity periods, however, turn the tubers fibrous and poor in quality.
Methods of Harvest
Plant tops are cut at 50 cm from the soil surface 1-2 weeks prior to harvest. Roots are pooled from the ground by hand.
Mites (Mononychellus tanajoa). Use tolerant cultivars and plant at the beginning of the wet season. Encourage buildup of predators.
Thrips (Frankliniella williamsi). Use resitant cultivars.
Cassava hornworm (Erinnysis ello). Parasitism by Trichogramma spp. and paper wasp (Polistes sp.)
Year-round from Florida, Mexico, Central America, South America, Antillas.
Import and other World Production Data
The estimated total world production of cassava is about 120 million MT, with Africa, the Far East, and South America producing about 35%, 35% and 27% of world production, respectively.
US Costs of Production (per hectare)
According to 1978 estimates for cassava production in Southern Florida: Total production costs per hectare= $1,830.