How to utilize your Arable Land 

It all starts with soil. In actual sense, we farm the soil and the soil, response back with good yields. You need good soil to grow healthy plants and get good yields.

While horticulture crops can produce in a variety of soils, they are better suited to fertile, well drained and moisture retentive soils. Explaining to students from Vaal School of Agriculture at indaba hotel in Kempton Park. Mr. Thulani Gumede from South African Agronomists Council, “it’s important to keep soil pH in the proper range in order to produce the best yields of high quality produce. The soil pH influences plant growth, nutrients and the activities of Microorganisms in the soil’.

Soil with a pH of between 5.4 to 6.8 are ideal for most crops. Though 6.5 is the best. You can begin to improve your soil by adding organic matter such as compost, lime and gypsum. This will improve the soil structure and biological activity, within the soil, highlighted Mr. Gumede.

One student enquired from the representative of the SA agronomist council. ‘But how does one know how good her / his soil is?’ asked the student.

The response from the soil expert was, ‘by getting a proper soil test!’  

Get the soil test is a great way of assessing your soil fertility. To get a soil test, take soil samples of your field. Contact the soil testing lab like, SA research board, SA Fertilizer Corporation, Vuka Research Board, Riyakoapane Agricouncil. When you are ready to send or deliver your soil sample to them, added Mr. Gumede.

In addition, the agronomist says, if you take baking soda, mix with your soil, it produces that fizzy soil, it means your soil is acidic. Then also if you take vinegar, pour it on your soil, if it makes that fizzy soil, it means it’s alkaline.

It was the a valuable indaba  to the young students aspiring to be one day master farmers of Africa and return our continent of Africa to be the food basket of natural foods of the world.

By L. Siziba

One thought on “How to utilize your Arable Land 

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