The Department of Plant Production and Soil Science is a multidisciplinary department and consists of four broad disciplines:
To provide high-quality teaching, research and community service in order to play a significant role in the advancement of the agricultural sciences as the basis for prosperity of the peoples of South Africa and the African continent.
To prepare graduate and undergraduate students in agronomy, horticulture, pasture science, and soil science for fulfilling careers in academia, industry or government
Develop thorough research, new knowledge and techniques that are relevant to the production and management of economically important plant species, and the management of soil and water resources on a sustainable basis
Communicate research findings through scholarly publication and educational programmes of value to stakeholders
Support the scientific community and serve the broader public through outreach activities such as problem-oriented research and extension.
Limpopo’s tomato growers have to face up to climate change - 20/10/2014
Limpopo Province produces 66% of the total annual tonnage of tomatoes grown in South Africa. The province is also deemed particularly vulnerable to the impact of climate change, partly because it is exposed to extreme weather events. A new study demonstrates the extent to which current climate change scenarios are likely to impact tomato production and proposes possible methods for farmers to mitigate the impact.
Walking the tightrope - 20/10/2014
Twenty first century organisations can be as large and powerful as countries, yet the communication and knowledge revolution has shrunk the planet and its people into a global village. These extremes of size and a shifting environment force organisations to walk a tightrope balancing people, planet and profit.
UP conducts validation trial for IDEXX’s new pregnancy test for cows - 17/10/2014
Improved pregnancy rates among cattle mean greater profitability for dairy and beef farmers. IDEXX, an international company dealing with diagnostic products in animal health, recently approached the University of Pretoria with a request to conduct a project to assist in devising reliable, cost-effective methods for diagnosing pregnancy in cattle. This led to the bovine pregnancy test validation trial, which is being conducted in the South African dairy industry.
IUFRO appoints Prof Mike Wingfield as new President - 14/10/2014
The International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) announced the appointment of Prof Mike Wingfield as new President on 10 October 2014. IUFRO’s International Council elected him during a meeting at the 24th IUFRO World Congress, which was held in Salt Lake City, Utah, United States.