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Pole Sitao Production Guide

Local Name

Sitao (Tagalog)
Sitao (Bisaya)
Utong (Ilocano)
Latuy (Marinduque)

Scientific Name - Vigna unguiculata (L.) Walp.cv.group Sesquipedalis

Brief Description

       Pole sitao is a climbing herbaceous crop raised basically for its pods, although shoots & young leaves are also edible. Pods are slender, 30-60 cm long & somewhat inflated with many seeds whose color depends on the variety.

Uses and Nutritional Value

      The succulent young pods, which have a high nutritional value, can be sautéed alone or cooked along with other vegetables. The nutritional composition per 100 g of the pod is shown below:

Nutrient                                   Amount

Water                                       89.0 g
Protein                                     3.0 g
Fat                                           0.5 g
Carbohydrates                          5.2 g
Fiber                                        1.3 g
Calcium                                  64.0 mg
Phosphorous                           54.0 mg.
Iron                                          1.3 mg.
Vitamin A                               167.0 IU
Vitamin B1                              0.07 mg
Vitamin C                               28.0 mg

Production Management


       CSL-19- is an early maturing variety, which flowers 37 to 43 days after planting. Pods are light green, crisp, smooth textured, & non-fibrous with good eating quality. CSL-19 is moderately resistant to black bean aphids and bean fly. Other light-green-podded varieties are CSL-14, CSL-15, CSL-16, PS 3 & PS 1.

       83-00 2- is a variety with dark green leaves, which flowers 39-48 days after planting. It is moderately resistant to bean fly and pod borer & has a high level of resistance to fusarium wilt. Pods are dark green with purple tips, crisp, non-fibrous, and with good eating quality. Seed coat is very thick. Other dark-green-podded varieties are Sandigan, CSD-4, 87-005, Acc 228, CSD-36 and 89-020.

Climatic and Soil Requirements

       Pole sitao is well adapted to the lowland tropics with a temperature range of 20-35 oC. It grows best under full sunlight although it can also tolerate partial shading.

       Adequate supply of water and a rich friable, fertile soil promotes healthy growth and good quality pods.

Cultural Management

       Pre-germinate or directly sow seeds in pots or drill 2.5 to 3.5 cm deep in the plots with a distance of 30 cm. Construct trellis/stakes, 200-250 m. long to support the vines after the seedlings have fully developed. Boxes, plastic twines, abaca twines or wire will also help support the climbing habit of the crop.

      Apply organic waste to enhance crop vigor and yield. Mulch the crop with grass clippings and kitchen waste.

      To minimize pest occurrence and damage, plant marigold and holy basil (solasi) in borders as insect repellant. Spread grated coconut waste over the plant to invite ants, which feed on worms. Spray hot pepper extract with soap against aphids and pod borers.


       Pick young pods six to seven weeks after planting or when seeds become visible on the outline of the pod. Fresh pods left in the field becomes tough and dissolved. Seeds become swollen, which reduces yielding capacity. Harvest every 2-3 days.

       For marketing, 20-40 pods may be bundled. Store in a cool (8oC), dry place up to four weeks.

Cost and Return Analysis Per Hectare

ITEMS                                                             AMOUNT (P)
VARIABLE COSTS                                          P 40,300

A.Labor (P150.MD)
   Plowing                                           1,500
  Harrowing                                         1,000
  Fertilization (4x)(10MD)                     1,500
  Planting (3 MD)                                  450
  Irrigation (7x) 21MD                          3,150
  Hilling-up (4MD)                                 600
  Trellising/twine installation(6MD)         900
  Vine training (3MD)                            450
  Weeding (10 MD)                            1,500
  Spraying (3x) (3MD)                           450
  Harvesting (10x) (30 MD)                  4,500
                 Sub-total                       16,000

  Seeds (15 kg)                                 6,750
    Chicken manure (350bags)           12,250
    Complete (2 bags)                            960
  Ammonium phosphate (2bags)         1,070
  Muriate of potash (2 bags)                  960
    Lannate (3L)                                 1,050
    Sevin (3kg)                                   1,260
               Sub-total                         24,300

FIXED COSTS                                          20,063

  Land Rental                                   5,000
    5 pcs. Scythe (2yrs)                        63
    3 pcs. Shovel (3 yrs)                        75
    5 pcs. Hoe (3 yrs)                          125
    2 knapsack sprayers (5 yrs)            800
    1 grass cutter (5yrs)                     2,000
Interest on loans at 20% int p.a.       12,000
TOTALCOSTS                               60,363
GROSS INCOME a          94,000 -188,000
NET INCOME                  33,637- 127,637
a With marketable yield of 9.4 t/ha at P10-20/kg.

Source: Pole Sitao Production Guide
Info Bulletin No. 154/1999

Reproduced By:

Department of Agriculture
Region IV -B