The FarmImpact project (supported as part of the CLIENT II Programme by the German BMBF) combines a larger group of experts of different scientific backgrounds and introduces modern technology such as numerical modelling of near-ground wind fields and crop evapotranspiration, microclimatic and ecophysiological measurements, drone and satellite based remote sensing and soil and hydrological models to determine the exact water needs of farm crops. Central to the project is the use of tree windbreaks that supply a sustainable and renewable solution to reduce windspeeds and as a consequence, evapotranspiration. The windbreak trees also provide additional ecosystem services (e.g. shade, pollination services, shelter, and, importantly, it sequesters carbon to mitigate global climate change).
The Department of Forest and Wood Science (DFWS) hosted a meeting for the FarmImpact project researchers in Stellenbosch from 20-22 September 2022 to discuss the final integration of the results obtained to date, and to prepare for a book publication that will detail the scientific achievements of the research project. The proposed title of the book is “Windbreaks in modern agriculture and horticulture: Integration of trees into agro-ecosystems in the Western Cape, South Africa". The book is planned for publication in 2023. Ben du Toit, Anton Kunneke and Deon Malherbe contributed on behalf of the DFWS. The reader is referred to these websites for more details: