https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3RSDarfkvvV3IBAbdp0utQhttps://sacoronavirus.co.za/http://www.im-info.co.za/http://www.integrated-marketing.co.za/

How to run an eco-friendly farm

eco-friendly farmeco-friendly farm
eco-friendly farmeco-friendly farm

How to run an eco-friendly farm

Farming wasn’t always about industrialisation and mass production. But, unfortunately, as the world has grown, farmers have been forced to keep up with the demands for food and produce. There are many big and small changes you can make to your farming practices that will be more environmentally friendly.

 

Why you want to be eco-friendly

If you’re wondering why you should be implementing eco-friendly practices, think about sustainability and what it means in the agricultural industry. Not to mention, it can lead to a healthier agricultural ecosystem.

If being eco-friendly saves soil fertility and addresses pest problems, why wouldn’t you want to implement those practices on your farm? Sustainable practices are, essentially, ways to keep your farm going and make the most of the natural resources around you.

 

Soil building

You need to take care of your soil. You can’t expect to grow anything successfully without good soil. Some eco-friendly practices to include in your soil building routine include:

  • Crop rotation: Crop rotation is the practice of growing a variety of different crops at one time in the same soil. This is done to bring more than one set of nutrients to the soil that will help to control weeds, pests and soil diseases.  
  • Cover crops: Cover crops are grown specifically for the protection and enrichment of the soil. Some popular cover crops include legumes, brassica and rye grass.
  • Intercropping: The practice of intercropping will increase your yields on the available space by planting a different crop amongst the main crop. For example, growing lettuce amongst brussel sprouts.

You can also look for energy efficient tillage and other soil-related equipment, like the PowerRip from Radium (http://www.radium.co.za). But you also need to know how and when to use this equipment without overworking and eroding the healthy soil. If you can maximise yields with the soil you have, it won’t be necessary to expand and affect non-agricultural ecosystems and water supplies.  

 

Renewable energy and biofuel

There are many sustainable energy options that you can implement on your farm to keep your electric fences, heaters, pumps and machines running. Solar panels and water and wind power are able to generate the electricity you need without burning fossil fuels to do so.

And then we have biofuel. Making the most of what is left over on your farm can be used to create renewable energy. Being eco-friendly means you don’t only limit the waste you product, but reuse it in a way that is beneficial to the environment and your agricultural efforts. You can turn any plant or organic material into biofuel, which can then be used as a replacement to harmful fossil fuels. With biofuel you can save money and boost the eco-friendliness of your farm.

 

Water conservation

Water conservation is a part of sustainability that every farm can benefit from. You never know when a drought will hit and it always pays to be prepared. Some water conservation tips you can implement on your farm that will make the most out of this precious resource includes:

  • Drip irrigation: This irrigation system sends water straight to the plant’s roots with no space for evaporation. It’s also a good idea to set up a timer for your irrigation systems to only turn on in the cooler times of day to save more water.  
  • Capturing water: Farmers need to be proactive and create water catchment areas such as dams, lakes and ponds where they can collect their own water and minimise their impact on municipal water levels.  
  • Dry farming: This type of farming relies on moisture in the soil to sustain crops during the dry season and they manage this through conservation tillage techniques.  
  • Rotational grazing: This promotes pasture regrowth by moving herds of livestock around different fields. This can improve the soil’s water absorption abilities.

 

The bug story

Many farmers know that there are both good and bad bugs. But when they bring out the pesticides, they’re killing them all. There are bugs you need to encourage to be around your crops and some you need to get rid of without compromising the benefits of the good bugs.

Ladybugs, braconid wasps, ground beetles, lacewings and tachinid flies are all bugs you want around your plants. They feed on the bad bugs (especially aphids) and act as a natural, eco-friendly pest killer.

Pesticides are damaging to the environment and can affect your soil, water, vegetation and other animals that are harmless to your farm. It’s not worth the resources just to get rid of a few pests that can be dealt with naturally.

 

Organic farming

Adopting these practices of organic farming can make all the difference on your farm. Understandably, it may be extremely difficult for large-scale agricultural corporations to suddenly change and replace all their processes. As long as they are aware of their environmental effects and find and implement the few eco-friendly practices that are doable for them. There will be benefits to organic farming practices.

The goal is to accommodate biodiversity on your farm and that can have a positive effect on your farm’s resilience.

eco-friendly farm