"Modern agriculture grows plants from the soil, regenerative agriculture grows soil from the plants."
- Steve Kenyon -
ABOUT BUSH-WILLOW CREEK
Bush-Willow Creek is a family owned ranch close to the small rural town of Hoedspruit in Limpopo, South Africa.
Our ranch is more about building the soil, water and nutrient cycles and protecting the environment than it is about raising animals. The animals that we raise are a by-product of a functioning ecosystem and without a functioning ecosystem we won’t have a natural raised product to supply to our customers.
We strive to protect and improve our soils, which in turn, provide us with improving biomass to graze and browse our free ranging wildlife and managed herds of cattle and sheep. Our managed herds of livestock mimic the movements of herbivores like Cape Buffalo and Wildebeest that are no longer able to complete their migration routes due to man made infrastructure.
Giving soils and plants much needed trampling and aeration whilst depositing dung and urine as a natural fertiliser as they pass by. This is then followed by a long period of rest and exclusion to allow proper recovery of vegetation to cover the soils. All of this helps with water infiltration, retention of natural nutrients whilst combatting erosion and preventing over grazing.
We only intervene if the problems are man made, be it erosion, bush encroachment, under or over grazing, or in the case of livestock, genetic selection of low maintenance, high performing animals instead of animals that need crutches to attain their full potential.
We believe in a holistic approach not just in farming but in the way we choose to live. Our aim is to promote sustainability through a symbiotic relationship with all that we impact and that which impacts us.
A coexistence between man and the natural environment we inhabit.
MEET IAN SHOEBOTHAM
Ian leases a space on the farm from us to run a free range broiler operation. He is experimenting with ways to produce meat chickens more sustainably.
His aims are to reduce dependency on commercial chicken feed which has unsustainable inputs and needs to be transported over long distances. He also incorporates the ecological function of chickens into the farm as they scratch, manure and weed land before planting crops. Along with more space and smaller flock sizes, Ian hopes to produce chickens in a more ethical manner.
We are also experimenting with the use of his chickens in our sheep herds to control the fly population, an example of a great symbiotic relationship.