In this edition, we talk to three dynamic agronomists in Mzansi about cover crops, their types, uses, and benefits for both new and experienced farmers.
We are joined by Onele Mduzulwana, an agronomist at the Gauteng-based NGO Daracorp; Wafiq Essop, an agronomist and business developer at AfriNat; and Jovan Erasmus, an agronomist at Netafim.
Why are cover crops popular nowadays?
Cover crops are used primarily to reduce soil erosion. In addition, you’ll be able to boost the vitality and sustainability of your soil. Mduzulwana says that increasing either your water availability or your water holding capacity can be highly helpful, but only if the process is carried out correctly.
“The idea is to cut the cover crop as close to the soil as possible and then you have two options; the first option is to that you turn the plant material or the roots and you take the advantage of the nutrient stored while tilling it into the soil.
The second option is that you till in the whole plant including your foliage, as well as the roots into the soil.”
However, according to Erasmus, the most difficult part of the process is coming up with a solution that is compatible with drip irrigation. This is due to the fact that you might not receive rainfall that will nourish your cover crops.
Catching up with a #SoilSista
This week, we honour Xolile Nkosi as our #SoilSista. She elaborates on how she became involved in agriculture and how the Corteva Women Agripreneur initiative has helped her along the way.
Want to know more? Listen to the full episode of Farmer’s Inside Track.
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