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For hints and tips on growing a vegetable garden or subsistence farming visit the Starke Ayres Garden Centre website - www.starkeayresgc.co.za
All the latest news on Starke Ayres’ vegetable seed varieties, and the success that commercial vegetable seed farmers have achieved using them.
This page will also be updated with new seed variety releases and other commercial seed industry news.
When Starke Ayres and Prospect Tomatoes started working together it was the beginning of a long-standing relationship.The farming operation was started by Mr Cecil Dalbock as long ago as 1958 and the business took its’ name from the farm where he first produced tomatoes. The first plantings were on dry land and these later progressed to sprinkler irrigation. This was changed to drip irrigation in 1970 which represented a huge step forward at that time. Varieties such as Money maker, Indian River and Homestead were the standards. These plantings were untrellised with no thought of plastic mulch. What a difference over half a century makes!
Cecil refers with fond memories to those days and remembers well his interactions with Starke Ayres. He has enjoyed many good years of technical support and effective business interactions. New and improved varieties are constantly being introduced and many of these were tested by Prospect. Varieties such as STAR 9008, STAR 9006, STAR 9037 and NADINE have all found places in the programme over the years. Nadine in particular produced consistently top yields over many years of open field production. These crops had “long legs” and grew very well under the management of the Prospect team.
Early in 2005 Prospect took the bold decision to move production under protection and started building glasshouses. The move was a huge success resulting in record crops of up to 450 tons/Ha. As often happens in farming new problems arise just as things are going well. In this case it was the appearance of Tomato Yellow Leaf Curl Virus (TYLCV) and a quick solution was needed to ensure continued production. This solution was provided by the STARKE AYRES variety LINARES which had just given excellent trial results. By using this and other resistant varieties, Prospect could continue producing top crops. This scenario demonstrates the importance of a dynamic range of products and effective testing. The STARKE AYRES tomato range is constantly developing and continues to offer solutions.
Mr Dalbock has a very positive outlook towards farming and he regards this as key to success. He feels that production and marketing must play integrated roles for the benefit any farming enterprise as a whole. To farm successfully and produce consistently good crops is a team effort from the seed supplier through production to marketing. STARKE AYRES is committed to being part of this team, giving support and always having the customers best interests at heart. Well done to the Prospect Team, we look forward to seeing more growth and innovation, walking the road alongside your team!