The small-scale agricultural sector is considered as an indispensable role player in improving the South African rural economies by means of enhancing sustainable rural livelihoods. This paper critically assesses the contribution of small-scale agriculture in enhancing the South African rural economies. The South African Government have numerous agricultural interventions as an approach to improving rural livelihoods. Despite various policies and interventions that have been in place to ensure that small-scale agriculture improves rural economies; there is still a dearth of research in understanding small-scale agriculture dynamics that affect rural economies. Some of the essential aspects of the findings reveal that rural communities in South Africa regard small-scale agriculture as a source of income generation and enhancing food security. These findings highlight the negative effects on the South African small-scale agriculture suffering from insufficient productivity, infertility of soil, insufficient water and climate change. The poor access to markets and inadequate financial support services were identified as the major constraints that hinder small-scale agriculture to contribute to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and rural economic development. The small-scale agricultural sector should come up with self-sufficient interventions to avoid dependence on the Government and other stakeholders.