Excursion provides crucial insight into farming

Alan Sutton.

Macadamia farmers recently received sound advice from successful peers in the Hazyview area during tours of two exemplary farms hosted by the Valley Macadamias Group.

Alan Sutton, chairman of Valley Macs, kicked the day off at Naties River with a presentation focusing on the changes within the industry.

The excursion then took to two local farmers, Elias Pangane and Thys Nel, where those in attendance learned about newly planted macs as well as the correct farming practices for young and growing trees.

Elias, from Lost and Found Farming, has been in the industry since 1993 with his father and grandfather. Before he switched his practise to macs, he farmed sugar beans. It was not until 2008 when he planted his first 200 beaumonts. The farm grew and in 2010 he decided to plant Nelmac and A4.

The next stop was at Aan de Vliet, where Thys has been farming for 40 years. He bought the farm in 2013 but only planted beaumonts in January 2015. He now owns a total of 3 000 trees, which yield about 22,5 kilograms per hectare (dry nut in shell). After a Q&A session at each farm, the farmers proceeded back to Naties River, where lectures were given by Andries Burger of Lowveld Agrochem, Michael Esmeraldo of Netafim and Jimmy Davies from Pretoriuskop Nursery. The day ended with a casual dop en tjop.

Stefan de Villiers

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