Soil and Water Conservation
To keep yields high and farm in a sustainable way soil and water must be carefully managed so as not to damage the environment. One way to help conserve the quality of water and soil is afforestation which takes reduces surface run off of water as well as trapping minerals in the soil. Also, the leaves falling off in summer lead to minerals being added to the top of the soil. All of this contributes to healthy soils.
Afforestation takes place across all of Exagris’ farms although two stand out for the use of afforestation. In Mchaisi 5000 seedlings of many species have been distributed to the local community for planting in collaboration with Total Land Care (http://www.totallandcare.org/). A further 2674 seedlings have been distributed to schools and communities around Katonthowolo, most of these seedlings were raised on the farm. The planting of these trees with hopefully lead to a more sustainable farming environment for the area in the future.
Drainage can also be an issue and it is particularly in Nkhozo due to its close proximity to the hills. This leads to flooding and soil washing away in the local area which in turn leads to a bad relationship with locals. To fix this problem five new drains have been opened carrying water away from the village and to the local Kabaza river. This also reduces surface run off of water on the farm reducing the amount of soil being removed from the farm. Again this leads to a more sustainable farm for the future.