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  • Manure – a technical… Manure is the waste from animals. It can be obtained either from natural deposits or livestock farming. The content of manure is highly variable, and…
  • Natural fertilizers for vegetables Natural fertilizers for vegetables usually refer to manure, compost and industrial waste products from animals. It consists of biodegradable material which is normally eco friendly.…
  • Soil Sulfur cheat cheat… Soil sulfur is not a very well known element, but it is part of the macronutrients. Sulfur or S, is absorbed in the same amounts…
  • Soil Calcium cheat sheet… Soil calcium can be a mystery as most growers focus on nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus. If you scan literature, scientists get very involved in detail…
  • Carrot farming and production Climate requirements of carrots Carrots is a cold weather crop. The ideal growing season is from early autumn to late spring. Carrots can be grown…
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Banned and restricted herbicides

As the pressure increases to develop safer and more economical herbicides, the Government is forced to either withdraw or restrict some of the older chemicals.  Table 3 provides a list of the restricted and banned herbicides used in South Africa.  It is important to have this list handy so that anybody using these chemicals can be…

Application of herbicides

Application and Herbicide drift If pressure is used to apply herbicides, there will always be some herbicide drift through the air.  If there is no commercial crop in the vicinity, spray drift will have no effect, however, when weeds have to be controlled between rows of a commercial crop, any spray drift might cause considerable damage.…

Trellising and staking field grown tomatoes

harvesting ripe field grown tomatoes

Determinate variety tomatoes need to be trellised. Unlike processing tomatoes which are not trellised and in most very large commercial farms, harvested by mechanical means, which means processing tomatoes are only harvested once.  Determinate fresh tomatoes ( such as the standard beefsteak tomato varieties) are harvested during a period of 90-120 days depending on the…

Harvesting field tomatoes

Harvesting field grown tomatoes is a labour intensive process.  Unlike processing tomatoes which can be harvested mechanically, field grown trellised tomatoes has to be harvested by hand. The sorting can be done mechanically. Tomato fruit ripen according to temperature.  The ripening process is initiated by the hormone ethylene. In long life tomatoes, ethylene release is…

Solving the mystery of the two main types of tomato plants

Solving the mystery of the two main types of tomato plants Indeterminate tomato varieties will grow ‘forever’.  So they can grow over two seasons. Determinate varieties die after about 100 days.  If you have a very short season to grow your tomato crop it is cheaper to buy a determinate variety, but if you want…

Quality of vegetable crops

Quality is one of those elusive characteristics upon which so much depends but about which is so little known.  The number of definitions for quality probably equals the number of writers on the subject and the various interpretations range from those of extreme simplicity to others which are complicated and detailed.  It is important to…

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