Avontuur Sustainable Agriculture

Sustainable Farming

  • Principles
  • Research
  • Learning events
  • Projects

Restoration of Biodiversity

  • Restoration trials on ploughed Renosterveld in collaboration with Simon Todd (independent) and Eugene Marinus (SANBI): seeding of 3 ha with the seed of 9 species of indigenous plants.
  • Research
  • Trials
  • Learning events

Alien Plant Control

  • Control of invasive tree species: Pinus, Populus, Eucalyptus and Acacia.
  • Control of invasive weeds: Solanum elaeagnifolium (satansbos) and Amsinckia retrorsa.

Erosion Control

  • Survey of extent and severity of soil erosion on Avontuur Farm.
  • Experimental design and monitoring of various erosion control measures.
  • Research
  • In April 2013 students Lynn Kayser and Michael Kruspe of the University of Hamburg undertook research relating to rehabilitation of degraded landscapes on Avontuur, and with farmers in the Suid Bokkeveld. Lynn Kayser used a modified version of the WOCAT Approaches questionnaire to gain insight into the economics of the land degradation and restoration of small-scale rooibos farms and on Avontuur where treatments have been implemented. The preliminary results show that all had positive experiences of the rehabilitation and would recommend the treatments to other land users. Michael Kruspe’s study assessed soil loss and the deposition of silt above and below check dams, and illustrated that in a gully system of approximately 75,000m², >2,946 m³ of soil has been lost, most of it in the past 50 years.

  • GEF Small Grants Project
  • This project was initiated in 2013 with the aim of developing the capacities of local land users and staff of conservation agencies to manage soil and water resources in a more sustainable manner. The project launched at a well-attended workshop at Avontuur on 11 May 2013, in the course of which participants were introduced to some principles of sustainable soil and water management, and provided with the opportunity to apply these in practice. Subsequent to the workshop the team of Andre van Wyk, Areefa Tietis, Cynthia Coetzee, Andries Opperman and Moeti Phala constructed a series of check-dams and micro-catchments on the more degraded part of Avontuur, with very impressive results. Participatory design of soil and water management interventions on the farms Dobbelaarskop and Kortkloof has also taken place.

  • Learning events
  • Projects

Capacity Development

Climate Change activities

Avontuur Sustainable Agriculture hosted a Climate Change Preparedness workshop on 22 October 2011 in collaboration with EMG and Indigo development & change.

Volunteer Programme

  • Short-term volunteers (2 months)
  • Longer-term volunteers (1 year)
  • Action days on Avontuur – watch out for announcements

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