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3383 Hectare Somerset East Farm for sale

Somerset East, Somerset East

ZAR - 16,500,000

REF - 8261

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Property Description

The farm is situated just north of the R63 and approx 10km on the Somerset side of Pearston.

Made up of 4 titles, the farm is a shade over 3383hectares in extent.

This part of the Eastern Cape is big country. The farms sits nestled at the foot of the towering Swartberg Mountain range and incorporates a very pleasing blend of Karoo flats, deep, wooded drainage lines, undulating foothills and a significant chunk of the mountain itself. With over 960m change in elevation it has all the feature anyone could want, but still combines this with easily traversable 2 wheel drive terrain. It is the type of place that one could spend a lifetime walking, and still unearth new finds. There are a wealth of bushman paintings, the location of which the owner was able to point out, but to illustrate my point, an equal number of better looking sites that, by his own admission, the owner had never been to. It is common for farms in the area to have a rich diversity of habitat and biomes and this is certainly no exception.

Veld types
The bulk of the basin floor is classic Karoo. A carpet of edible succulents is dotted with the usual Jacket plums, Boscias and Scotias that so often characterize this biome. Grass species here is largely limited to the aristida genus. In the main, the succulents would be classed as very healthy, with a very good diversity of plant species per sample area. Where stock has historically been concentrated around the houses, old kraals, camp corners etc, this has been thinned to mainly common and Anchor Karoo, normally carpeted with cynodon as well. The latter appears well utilized as is common during winter in these sweetveld areas.

The River margins and drainage lines have a good density of acacia Karoo and Karee, both of which provide excellent cover and browse. The grass cover here is considerably more significant, with a variety of species including Pannicum Maxima, Cenchrus, Eragrostis Curvula and being found in pleasing quantities.
The foothills and mountain slopes have a far greater concentration of the typical Karoo forest trees (Scotias, Guarri, Boscias and Jacket plum). There was also evidence of a change in grasses, with some setaria and both species of Stipagrostis found.

There are areas of very healthy spekboom on the flats, but more so on the mountain slopes, where this is interspersed with a very good density of Themeda. I was told, although we did not get up there, that the mountain tops are a veritable carpet of Themeda, a trend I know to be true of many other farms in the region.

All in all, the farm has excellent diversity and as such, easily supports the impressive species count already resident. Cognoscents must be taken however of the fact that this is dry country and strict adherence to a calculated stocking ratio will be vital to maintain the current good health of the veld.

Rainfall / Water
The farm falls in a summer rainfall area with an annual average that varies between 350mm in the south up to 480mm against the high ground (considerably more on top). Ground, fountain and surface water is occasionally supplemented in winter by snowfalls. There are 4 very significant perennial fountains on the property, 2 of which nourish the main house with its absolute show piece of a garden. In addition there are a total of 14 boreholes, 5 of which are equipped with windmills and an additional one with a diesel engine. The latter was tested at around 19 000 litres an hour and is used to irrigate 4.75ha of winter fodder. The ground water seems to be excellent, with the only other hole that has been tested coming in at 15 000 l/hr, both of these being between 21 and 30m deep. There are 4 significant earth dams on the property and a number of smaller ones.

Main House. The main house is your typical old farm house, but it has been retro fitted with modern bathrooms, built in cupboards etc. It currently has 4 bedrooms (MES) with an extra, large bathroom. In addition there is an office, kitchen with separate pantry and scullery, large dining room and separate lounge area, large stoep with semi enclosed outdoor braai / entertainment area. The garden, as mentioned is an absolute showpiece that is best left to the photos to describe.
The second house has been beautifully restored by the owner’s son. It is also 4 bedrooms with one enormous bathroom, separate kitchen, lounge and dining room with a beautiful entertainment room with built in braai being a recent addition to the original structure
Both houses are very neat and homely.
The farm has the usual compliment of outbuildings, one of which is a very neat, fully enclosed shed of approx 35 x 12. There are 7 staff houses
The farm is currently fenced into 21 camps for small stock as well as a split (0-2months and then 2 months to adult) ostrich setup designed to carry about 1650 birds per annum. Both facilities have export certification.
In addition to the ostriches, the property carries 2000head of small stock and about 20 beefmasters.
The farm is totally off grid. The neighbour has power, and it could be laid on should a new owner so choose, but the current owners decided to go the alternate route. Both houses are fitted with a properly designed solar system. Banks of 230watt panels, supplemented by a 600W windcharger, charge deep cycle batteries running 48 / 240v invertors. Both houses have standby gensets if required, but this appears to be a rare exception.

While currently operated as a mixed stock farm, it would make a truly spectacular game farm, with just the right amount of feature to make it interesting without the abundance of inaccessibility that so often punishes a trigger happy hunter. The flatter areas would also make for ideal breeding centres, incorporating enough cover and feature for the animals without compromising capture. There is a possibility of securing 3 adjoining blocks that would square off the boundaries, simplify access and add a further 2000h should one so choose.


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The Susan Deacon Property Group


The Susan Deacon Property Group



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