EduPlant announces South Africa’s best permaculture school food garden

2020 challenged everyone, especially schools which opened and closed more often than usual. The culmination of the EduPlant programme, a competition which usually sees schools from across the country coming together to compete for the honour of being awarded South Africa’s best permaculture school food garden, went online last year. This allowed schools from far and wide to enter their school food garden.

R300 000’s worth of prizes were awarded to the winners, with all 42 ­finalist schools also receiving a cash prize to support their food-growing efforts. Food & Trees for Africa (FTFA) quali­fied as an essential service during hard lockdown, and distributed 126 000 additional seedlings to help school’s food gardens meet the greater demand for food in their communities.

Robyn Hills, FTFA Programme Manager says, “EduPlant has run since 1994 and in that time we have supported, trained and resourced thousands of schools with educational materials, seeds, tools, plants, fruit trees and onsite workshops. The school gardens are amazing places for learning, growing food and bringing the community together. We congratulate the 2020 EduPlant winners, and acknowledge all the ­finalists and entrants for their efforts. They have served as critical food hubs during COVID, providing fresh, naturally grown vegetables and fruit in their communities. They are true food heroes at a time when improved food security is vital for the country.”

Our strategy for 2021 is to develop the winning schools into food security hubs serving the schools’ needs, and those of the wider community who live around the schools. With your help, we can make this a reality. Donate today at www.trees.org.za

View the 42 finalists’ video entries at www.eduplant.org

The categories are:

Emerging – for first time EduPlant schools

Experienced – for schools that may have entered the competition before and won a previous category.

Mentoring – schools with advanced permaculture knowledge which have won awards in previous competitions and are now mentoring other schools and communities in their vicinity.

Most Improved School – awarded to the school who improves the most in the Experienced category.

Fan Favourite – as voted for by social media engagement.

Provincial Winners – best school from each province.

Winners per category:


1. Seyisi Primary School, Eastern Cape

2. Nobanda Primary School, KwaZulu-Natal


1. Shea O’Connor Combined School, KwaZulu-Natal

2. Leubaneng Primary School, Limpopo

3. Kwa-Ngubeni Primary School, KwaZulu-Natal


1. Kings Harvest Academy, KwaZulu-Natal

2. Sesete Primary School, Mpumalanga

3. Yomelela Primary School, Western Cape

Fan Favourite:

1.      Hlatikulu Senior Primary School, Eastern Cape (Emerging)

Most Improved School

1.      Elizabeth Matsemela Secondary School, Gauteng  (Experienced)

Provincial Winners:

Eastern Cape: Jamangile Senior Secondary School (Experienced)

Free State: Gelukwaarts Farm School (Experienced)

Gauteng: Philip Kushlick School (Emerging)

KwaZulu-Natal: Woodhurst Primary School (Emerging)

Limpopo: Mmakau Primary School (Emerging)

Mpumalanga: Senianya Primary School (Experienced)

North West: Edisang Primary School (Experienced)

Northern Cape: Laerskool Wilgenhoutsdrift (Emerging)

Western Cape: Eden School for Learners with Special Education Needs (Experienced)

The Gardener