- Amorentia Estate
- Amorentia Ornamental Nursery
- Avocado Nursery
- Macadamia Nursery
- Sweet Dragon Fruit Nursery
Macadamia growers (especially those who are new to Macadamia farming) often question the differences between the root systems of vegetative clonal rooted-cuttings (VPs) versus seedling rootstocks. The answer is simple; VPs will produce a more even orchard due to the consistency of genetics and they offer a superior root-system when propagated by superior nurseries with experience.
It is true that not all cultivars root well on their own rootstocks in which case either a seedling or a clonal rootstock is required for grafting.
Amorentia customers give consistent feedback confirming what is already known at Amorentia – their Beaumont VPs are of excellent quality and show evidence of high yield early because they are well rooted and because their genetic material is superior.
High yielding nursery trees come from excellent mother-material.
Through its Plant-Improvement Scheme, the Amorentia Macadamia Nursery Beaumont mother-trees, (as well as all other cultivars) were monitored for high performance over a 15 year period. This exercise ensured that only high yielding trees remain in the mother-blocks. This was achieved by weighing the nuts from each mother-tree and removing all poor performing trees. It means that the genetic material used for all propagation at Amorentia offers growers a high-yield potential from day 1. It also means that the Nursery has 100% control over their propagation procedures.
Amorentia Macadamia Nursery hosts a memorable Orchard management workshop
On Tuesday the 11th of September 2018, Amorentia Macadamia Nursery hosted an Orchard Management workshop which was attended by nearly 60 farmers.
The day kicked off at 9 am with a visit to Chris Dando’s farm. Philip Lee and Stephan Schoeman, two renowned and experienced Macadamia consultants were in attendance to share their knowledge of Macadamia tree Orchard management. The workshop’s format was designed to encourage open discussions about orchard management.
The farmers had the opportunity to visit a large, beautiful 10-month-old Beaumont orchard which had been planted with trees from Amorentia Macadamia Nursery – planting-out protocols and young tree management was discussed in great detail. Some traditional and some more modern techniques were considered and debated, the consensus was that each grower should adopt methods that suit their management style.
The next orchard was a 3-year-old A4 orchard, also with trees planted from Amorentia Macadamia Nursery. It was interesting to learn about A4 pruning techniques, and encouraging to see the trees in excellent condition and full of flower – an indication of good management practices by Chris and good nursery mother material.
The procession of bakkies headed to Merensky High School where 4-year-old Amorentia Beaumont orchard on ridges were visited – the cost vs benefit of ridging macadamias was debated and the workshop attendees were lucky enough to witness a ridge dug in half for a closer look at the root development. The 15-year-old Merensky trial block as also visited. Philip was involved in the planting and monitoring of the trial block, it was interesting to learn which cultivars outperformed the others.
Lunch was served at the Amorentia Estate and Nursery offices were Graeme Whyte from Green Farm Nut Company addressed the growers and gave an update on the current international macadamia market – and the message was clear – plant more Macadamias!
Finally, the growers were treated to a walk around Amorentia Macadamia Nursery with a final discussion on mature tree light management (pruning). All the farmers found the day extremely helpful and informative which ended with a lekker South African Braai!
Amorentia Estate and Amorentia Macadamia Nursery hosted a macadamia tree pruning training day this week. One of our growers requested that we run the session to help train his staff. The day was a great success and they all left with a wealth of knowledge. Young macadamia tree training and mature macadamia tree pruning is an essential part of macadamia orchard management.
These young Beaumont macadamia trees were planted in the Letsitele valley.
Their incredible growth is attributable to their mother material from Amorentia’s mother block and also to the good farming practices implemented by these dedicated farmers
The recipe: Excellent nursery trees thorough land preparation, Good nutrition from early on and immediate disease control.
THE IMPORTANCE OF A STRONG AND HEALTHY ROOT SYSTEM AND PROVEN MOTHER MATERIAL
Since winter 2016, improvements to our propagation techniques has resulted in our nursery trees growing faster. This, coupled with the incredible rain we’ve had means that we have witnessed the trees, especially the vegetatively propagated Beaumont trees, double in size, reaching SAMAC’s minimum height recommendation ahead of schedule. The most critical factor for us, has been to ensure that the nursery tree roots have developed at the same rate as the leaves/height of the trees. We have evaluated the root systems on-going and continue to select trees which adhere to all of the industry’s guidelines for our growers.
We were recently asked to inspect some trees that were planted out recently from another nursery as the farmer had lost over 10% of these young trees. The grower needed confirmation that he had not missed something vital in his planting out procedures.
What we could confirm, is that the the common denominator regarding the dying trees was a weaker or poorly formed root system. The trees were already under a lot of stress as a result of an extremely hot December and naturally, the trees with the weaker root systems were the first to die. It is likely that any surviving trees with a weak root system, will not make it past 5 years old.
Poor / deformed root systems with one-sided rooting
Establishing Macadamias is a long term investment and you must be sure that your trees will give you a return on your investment. The only way to achieve this is by planting the best possible trees from known mother material out of an established and experienced nursery. We monitored the performance of our mother block trees for more than 10 years and Only the highest yielding trees with proven crack-outs have remained in our mother blocks. This ensures even growth in the orchards with the greatest potential for high yielding trees.
Our advice to any grower is to visit your nursery and ask questions about root systems and mother material.
There are many new nurseries in our thriving industry now because the demand for trees is high. Some will follow the correct protocols and others are likely to take short cuts. You have the right to insist on seeing their protocols, mother material records and you have the right to inspect your trees. We always welcome and encourage our growers to visit their trees and to see the environment that they are produced in. At Amorentia we pride ourselves in following the correct protocols which were created for the benefit of the Macadamia industry as a whole.
We look forward to dispatching our record breaking beautiful trees this year. Amorentia Macadamia Nursery has never looked better and with the the new hail-netting that being out up, we can sleep easy knowing that our grower’s investments are safe in our hands.
We hope that all our growers had good rain and wish you all a successful 2017 season. Please feel free to stay in touch with us should you require advise or help