TRUFFLES – LAND SUITABILITY and CLIMATIC REQUIREMENTS
Growing Money Trees
Retailing to local restaurants at R 12500/kg and with yields multiplying exponentially each year its easy to see why the oak tree inoculated with black truffle is a rapidly growing money-making industry in South Africa.
Ideal plantation sites have:
- Moderate winter and summer temperatures
- Free draining low clay soils
- Water available for irrigation
Mushrush works with you to select the most suitable site, taking into consideration terrain and climatic characteristics.
We will need; your GPS co-ordinates, cold units and an idea of how many hectares you are considering for truffle establishment (.5ha +. Our recommended minimum is 3ha)
June/July minimum temperatures, less than 10° C. December/January average maximum temperatures, less than24° C.
Temperatures outside this range are not ideal but may be tempered with mulching and use of slope aspects
Cold unit = [(max + min)/2] -10
Permeable and well aerated (free draining loam soils)
pH between 7.9 – 8.2
Waterlogged soils are to be avoided completely
No sub-soil compaction layers
Water and irrigation
Irrigation starts at the end of October to April, with January, February and March being the most intensive time period.
400-600 trees per hectare based on your site’s micro-climate.
More trees gives a denser mycelial network.
Filtered sunlight (70% shade)
Mushrush supply Holm Oak, – the European’s tree of choice and Spanish Rock-Rose to create the optimal orchard for your region.
Annual soil testing is necessary to determine top-up lime.
Irrigation management ensures healthy truffle fungus and it’s spread through your plantation.
Plantation health advice is provided by our registered natural scientific professionals.
Regular removal of weeds around the trunks. Mow between the lines with a light tractor fitted with fat tyres. Aerate the soil in early Spring with a shallow-tine implement.
As the truffle fungus establishes on the tree roots, a bare area (brulé) will form under the trees indicating that the Tuber melanosporum fungus is established and providing nutrients to the trees.
Our professionals will visit to evaluate mycorrhizal density and quantity using DNA analysis.
We provide hunting and harvesting services with our trained dogs.