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Farm Basics


New opportunities to generate a sustainable income are opening up in SA’s poultry industry.
Security advisor Henk Boshoff says that farmers should avoid becoming soft targets for potential farm attackers. He spoke to Gerhard Uys about making a farm and its surrounding communities safer.
Raising cattle properly requires money, land and skill. Do you have enough of each to enter this business? Equally importantly, do you have a genuine interest in cattle?
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A mobile application that acts as an information platform for South African smallholder farmers, has been launched by Vodacom, in partnership with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and...
The Western Cape, the country’s largest wheat-growing region, was likely to produce 236 950t less wheat this year than in the previous season, according to the Crop Estimates Committee's first...
More than 35 000 jobs are on the line in the Western Cape’s agricultural sector, with losses expected to run into the billions, as a result of water allocations being...
The correct use of vaccines and medicines is crucial to increase food security and improve animal protein production in Africa, said Dr Riaan du Preez, manager for Afrivet’s sub-Sahara Africa...
South Africa’s agribusiness sector remains generally optimistic about business conditions in the country, according to the latest data.
The Jacaranda Agricultural Show will take place at the Tshwane Events Centre north of Pretoria, from 26 - 29 August 2015.
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The Onverwacht community, with support from Food and Trees for Africa, an international NGO, has opted for a more sustainable solution than RDP housing to improve their lives. Peter Mashala...
South Africa’s R12 billion a year sugar industry may be one of the world’s leading cost-competitive producers of high quality sugar, but it is currently beset by challenges. Trix Trikam,...
The Boer goat can help to make emerging farmers successful, and they also have a large local and foreign stud market.
Part-time sheep farmer, and managing director of the International School of Tanning Technology in Grahamstown, Dr Clive Jackson-Moss, talks about the hides and skins industry.
Farmers Kabelo and Matshidiso Mooketsi had no previous agricultural knowledge before they began working on a communal farm in 2008. Despite a lack of experience and a difficult introduction to...
Cape Aloes (Aloe ferox) in the Eastern Cape have provided the Xhosa people with medicinal and cosmetic necessities for hundreds of years. Recently their value has been recognised in helping...
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Jonno assists Mary with a stylish, modern contemporary home this week.

Cute timber cottage

Organic farm owner, John and Sue from Mossel Bay want to build a small timber frame home for themselves and are looking for professional architectural advice on the design of...
Experience South Africa’s national parks when they are at their best this coming year, says Taryn Arnott van Jaarsveld and René de Klerk.
Hand-held food is how human eating began. In this recipe, we move beyond the caveman prototype to enclose delicious chunks of Chinese-influenced pork in a roll.
Ngooni from Harare wants to build his first house and asks Jonno to assist with a design of a modern four-bedroom house.

At the foot of a mountain

Jonno helps a couple with a house near Barberton.
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Fat is a superb source of energy without the harmful side-effects of other energy sources, says Kim Dyson. And the ideal form to feed it to your horse is bergafat...
This ailment can cause laminitis and infertility. Outward signs are coarse hair and excessive thirst. Kim Dyson explains.

Acupuncture for equines

When acupuncture is used to stimulate specific points along affected energy channels, blockages are opened and the normal flow of energy is restored, says Kim Dyson.
Mike Burgess visited Christo Nowers at the state-run Dohne Agricultural Development Institute near Stutterheim to better understand how the herd has achieved an average calving percentage of 83,8% since 2000,...
At a recent poultry production course hosted by the Agricultural Research Council and presented by Paulus Sape and July Mahlangu, Farmer’s Weekly journalist Gerhard Uys learnt about some of the...
Cornel van Heerden is the Eastern Cape’s 2016 TAU SA’s Young Farmer of the Year. Mike Burgess visited him recently on the farm Wildefontein in the Lady Grey district to...
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There’s nothing worse than not having success with your first crop, so choose one that is cheap and easy to grow. In other words, choose cabbage.

How to water-treat seed

It is sometimes advisable to treat seed in order to remove a pathogen, or as a precaution before sowing. For example, capsicums (chillies and peppers) often suffer from bacterial spot,...
The Swartland Canola Competition recognises outstanding farming efforts, identifying trends that could help enhance the production of this crop. This year's winner, André Brink, may have found the secret formula...
Agriculture has never been considered a ‘sexy’ career choice for young people. So full marks must go to the Produce Marketing Association (PMA) for its initiative, launched a few years...
Last week I mentioned how important it is to have sufficient nitrogen in the seedling and growing medium. The procedure needs to be maintained from here on - the early...

Plunging into coffee?

Over the last few years, coffee production in South Africa has been more of a boutique industry limited to a handful of growers on minimal land. But as a coffee...
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