About Us

1-20140809_16310418mth 60 days after pruningSituated in the Klein Karoo, about an hour from George and Oudtshoorn, Western Cape, Myles and Nadene Esterhuizen farm with Aberdeen-Angus cattle, Dorper sheep and their amazing lucerne trees.

For over 8 years Myles has planted several hectares of lands under lucerne trees and has harvested millions of seeds. He enjoys germinating and growing seedlings and has developed a successful method of growing these out into thriving food-producing trees which thrive despite extreme heat, drought, cold and severe mountain winds.

Myles and Nadene are willing to help other farmers establish their farms under this excellent food-producing tree and will advise interested clients.  You are welcome to write to us.  Please use the comment form on the Prices & Orders page and we will reply to your personal email.

Happy Farming!

Copyright © 2012 by Myles & Nadene Esterhuizen

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the publisher permitted by copyright law.

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18 thoughts on “About Us

    • @Hermana, it is nutrient-rich fodder for grazing animals, not for humans. But we benefit from it when we eat the meat from the animals that graze on such excellent food!

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  1. Hi Myles,

    Found your Blog on Nadene’s blog. I am not a farmer but find this very interesting. We moved to De Rust from Pretoria 20 months ago. Best thing I could have done for my family. We all love it, but most of all we all love the Lord Jesus. Maybe we can get together sometime for some fellowship.

    I really like your footer, “The Life is in the Seed.”

    Best regards,

    Jack.

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    • Dagse Piet,
      Ek het nie self gedoen nie maar ek het al gelees en gehoor hoe hulle dit met n meganiese planter doen. Wat die sukses is van so n aanplanting is kan ek jou nie se nie.
      Piet, soos u sal weet is dit eenvoudig om hawe, koring ens te saai want hulle is in hulle honderde duisende gesaai en hulle ontkieming kan n mens tot n mate bepaal. Die boom lusern ontkiem baie goed in beheerde omstandighede. Eenvoudige maar wel beheerde omstandighede waar temperature, goed gedreineerde grond en water met toesig toegedien kan word. Die ideale omstadighede kom ook voor in die natuur maar dan moet ons wag vir die om te gebeur. Dit kan n groot frustrasie wees om te sien hoe boompies in n land van self opkom en dan sommer net vinnig weer vrek of opgevreet word deur krieke, springkane,slakke, hase of selfs die son. Ek het n hektaar in rye gesaai met saad en het minder as 10% ontkieming sukses behaal. Daarna het ek n hektaar jong saailinge in n gevestigde lusern land wat nie mooi presteer het nie geplant een meter uit mekaar en hier het ek 80% sukses behaal. Die klein oes vreters het genoeg kos gehad met die lusern en die lusern het die jong saailing beskut. Dit is amper dieselfde oefening waar ons lusern saam met hawe saai in die herfs. Die hawe groeie vinnig en beskut die lusern teen die koue. Die heel beste resultate het gekom toe ek bome wat ongeveer 60-80cm hoog staan 2.5m in die ry uitmekaar geplant het en die rye was 3m uitmekaar. Die bome het vir n maand en n half gelyk of hulle stil staan en skielik het hulle begin groeie. Hulle het van Oktober 2011 tot Maart 2012 hoogtes bereik wat wissel van 1m tot 1.8m. Daar is min of geen verliestes sover. Dit is seker maar meer moeite om hulle een vir een uit te plant maar ek voel ek is ver voor my ander voorbeelde.
      Wanneer iemand my vra wat die beste tyd is om n lusern boom uit te plant dan se ek met nuwe vertoue wanneer die boom ongeveer 80cm hoog staan. Hierdie aanplanting was die maklikste aanplanting. Ek het paartymaal 2 tot 3 weke laat verbygaan sonder dat ek hulle water gee. Die tye waar ek hulle water gegee het het ek hulle sommer goed natgemaak. Dit is klaar n boom en hy kan te min of te veel water hanteer. Sy vyande het onmiddelik verminder van 6 na 1.
      Piet jy kan heeltmal gelukkig wees deur sukses te behaal om saad met n planter toe te dien en ek wil jou nie wegwys van so n poging nie. Ek voel net dat selfs die manier se kanse om suksesvol te wees al hoe kleiner raak met die nag temperatuur wat nou begin daal. Die goeie raad wat ek vir jou kan gee is om bome self uit te kweek. Dit is baie maklik en nogals interessant ook. Ek kan vir jou stap vir stap instruksies gee. Hou die bome in sakke totdat hulle ongeveer 80cm hoog staan. Terwyl hulle groeie sit skyfbare klap spyte in want na sowat 18 maande sal die boom nie meer afhangklik wees van besproeing nie. Ek vestig myne met druppers en saai n hand vol kikuwe by elke drupper want ek moet in elk geval wag vir die boom om te vestig so die kikuwe kan homself ook sonder te veel kompetisie ook vestig.
      Ek weet ek antwoord nie jou vraag soos hy gevra is nie maar ek hoop dit help darem.
      Voorspoed met jou boerdery.
      myles

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    • Hallo Dirkie,
      Die boommpie moet ten minste 60cm hoog staan wanneer jy hom in die grond vestig. Probeer om jou bome te vestig in die lente sodat hulle n volle groei seisoen kan groei. Hulle kan tot 1.8m groei in hul eerste groei seisoen en dan sal hulle die koue oorleef.
      groete
      myles

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  2. Hi, wil net hoor of beeste die boom lusern net so kan eet of moet dit soos gewone lusern eers gedroog word. William

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    • @william nel, beeste en skape kan direk van die boom eet sonder enige gevaar van blaas soos met gewone lucerne, maar jou bome moet 18-maande tot 2-jaar oud wees sodat die diere die boom nie beskadig nie.

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  3. Myles
    Nogmaals baie dankie vir die insiggewende gesprek wat ons vanoggend kon gehad het. Dit word hoog op prysgestel en waardeer. Baie dankie vir die goeie raad.
    Aangename dag
    Neels

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  4. Good Evening ,to you I am very interested in the tree lucerne I have an old dairy kraal which I am going to plant these plants ,as we do have extremes in temperture here very hot in summer and rather cold in winter and priveledge to have irrigation .I n the future want to plant it in the karoo also about four ha have a good supply of water .
    If I can buy some plants from you I will have to transport them will the wind burn the plants and what is the cost per plant .Regards ,Francis Williamson . PS .I am from Addo and Jansenville .

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  5. Hi
    I have just bought 100 seeds for lucerne tree. the instructions states that i have to soak the seeds in hot water overnight. Why is that particularly important i.e. overnight? Could I soak them early in the morning for 8 hours and then plant them later in the afternoon.

    Regards
    Thabo

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    • @Thabo Masemola, you are correct in assuming that you need to soak your seeds for at least 8 hours, whether overnight or during the day, to start the scarifying process that prepares the seed for germination. Happy farming!

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  6. Hi to all
    First of, I did not purchase seeds of you as I was not aware of this site until now. Over the last 18 months I have managed grow 800 trees into 1 hectare. Through many challenges with Kangaroos, Birds , Cockatoo’s and such I have 15 rows between 6 and 18 months old. The question I have is some of them seem to be yellowing in the leaves. Is this just they way some go. Is there a male/female tree. Are they going to die, or are they lacking in something. There can be 3 in a row yellowing, then 4 nice and green and so on. Out of the 800 I’m guessing about 50 yellowing. The soil is very poor (purple). I live in the Mildura area.
    Would appreciate your thoughts
    Danny

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    • @Danny Woulfe, Well done on managing your trees in the the early stages. This is a vital aspect of successful lucerne tree farming. Once they are established, at about 18 months, they should be well on their way to becoming a reliable food source.
      To answer your questions —
      1. “Some of them seem to be yellowing in the leaves. Is this just they way some go? Are they going to die, or are they lacking in something?” We have also seen that some of the trees leaves turn yellow. In our experience, some young trees seem to take a knock, then sprout new leaves and grow into lovely green, lush trees. A few sometimes do not make it, and die. Myles suspects that it has to do with the roots and perhaps a lack of rhizobia in the soil. Adding phosphates to the soil may also help.
      2. “Is there a male/female tree?” No.
      3. “The soil is very poor (purple). I live in the Mildura area.” We don’t know your soil type or area, but these are pioneer plants and they can grow in very poor soils. They do not grow well in very dense, thick clay, or perpetually wet soils. Any well-drained soil suits the lucerne tree.
      Wishing you continued success in your lucerne tree farming!

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