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A seed-borne disease is capable of destroying an entire bean crop.

Ensuring that seed is disease-free

Planting seed infected by a bacterial disease could lead to complete crop failure. Rather pay more for the seed, if necessary, to ensure that it is clean. Consider the extra...
tomato leaves

Using nitrogen as an accelerator

Of all the elements, nitrogen has the most profound effect on a crop, and this is why you need to use it wisely.
green beans

Planting and harvesting green beans

Visual appeal plays a major role in the breeding of beans. Darker green, slender, straight beans have become more popular of late.
African Bollworm moths

Save money on chemicals

Farmers often ask for pest control programmes for their crops. They see them as a form of insurance. Is this justified? In a word, no!
Nitrogen deficiency showing a pink discoloration,

Ammonia-based fertiliser explained

Nitrogen fertiliser comes in two formulations: ammonia-based and nitrate-based. To make the correct choice, you need to understand the difference.
red peppers

Pest management in peppers

Sweet peppers need adequate levels of potassium and nitrogen. Before planting, you should therefore have a soil analysis done and apply potassium accordingly.
knapsack sprayer

The knapsack sprayer: still useful!

Recent years have seen the introduction of ever-more advanced crop sprayers, many of which are air-assisted to improve penetration into foliage.
A notched stick used to push the sweet potato plant runners into the ridges.

A beginner’s guide to planting sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes are so hardy and easy to grow that they could almost be classified as weeds! Even without optimal fertilisation and care, they produce reasonably well, unlike many other...
virus infected weeds and healthy weeds

How to reduce the risk of viruses in capsicums

Seed is a potential source of viruses in capsicums. However, it is a rare occurrence these days, as seed producers are keen to protect their reputations and take stringent precautions...
growing watermelon

Watermelon planting tips

Many watermelon growers plant as soon as possible in the season so they can market the crop early, when prices are high.
pumpkin fly maggot damage

Watch out for these common vegetable pests

Pests are an ongoing threat to vegetables, and need to be controlled effectively and timeously to prevent damage to the crop.
Growing Swiss chard

How to grow Swiss chard at home

Swiss chard can either be sown directly or transplanted. Both methods have their pros and cons.


‘New broom’ for Western Cape department of agriculture

Dr Mogale Sebopetsa will assume the position of new head of the Western Cape Department of Agriculture on 1 April. He takes over from Joyene Isaacs.
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