News

May 27

Landcare grant for soil moisture education

Posted by Cindy Cassidy at Friday, May 27, 2016

Member for Riverina Michael McCormack and Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister Keith Pitt announced funding for two local applicants under the National Landcare Programme Sustainable Agriculture Small Grants Round 2015-16.
Mr McCormack said FarmLink at Temora and Bruie Plains Landcare Group had received grants which will support Australia’s vibrant, innovative and competitive agriculture sector.
“FarmLink will receive $55,000 to support their successful project helping local farmers understand soil moisture conditions to boost their productivity,” Mr McCormack said.
“This project will help share local knowledge and skills across the sector to boost farm productivity and protect the natural resources that our agricultural industries depend on.
“The Bruie Plains Landcare Group has been provided with $11,000 to deliver a holistic grazing management course for Central West farmers to help empower landholders and lift their production.
“The Small Grants Round is an important component of the National Landcare Programme which ultimately delivers on the Coalition Government’s commitment to support profitable returns at the farmgate.
“I congratulate both organisations and I look forward to seeing these projects deliver results for our local farmers.”
Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister Keith Pitt said the Nationals in Government were working closely with volunteer Landcare groups and farming organisations to strengthen the Landcare program and prioritise works where they can have greatest impact.
“The Coalition’s strong investment of $1 billion over four years in the National Landcare Programme demonstrates our great commitment to support Landcare in Australia and ensure our lands remain a solid foundation for our agricultural sector,” Mr Pitt said.
“Projects like FarmLink and Bruie Plains will contribute greatly to increasing the knowledge and skills sharing of local farmers, leading to higher productivity and yields, and boosting the local economy.”

May 20

Rules of thumb for nitrogen management in crops

Posted by Cindy Cassidy at Monday, May 20, 2013

Interaction between soil moisture and nitrogen (N) levels plays a major role in determining wheat yield, according to a crop nutrition expert.

Dr Glenn McDonald, Associate Professor at the University of Adelaide’s School of Agriculture, Food and Wine, says having an understanding of the soil’s moisture holding capacity and information about changes in plant-available soil water during the growing season are important aspects of N management.

 “The supplies of water and N are the major drivers of growth and yield of crops, and the two interact to determine crop yield,” said Dr McDonald, when addressing a Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) grains research Update in Adelaide (SA) on nitrogen application “rules of thumb”.

 “While availability of moisture is recognised widely as an important factor limiting responses to N, it is also important to realise that lack of N can be an important limitation to soil water use and particularly use of subsoil moisture.”

While much of N management focuses on improving post-anthesis growth and grain filling, it is more than likely that the effects of N and its interaction with soil moisture are influencing yield earlier by affecting grain number as well as grain size, according to Dr McDonald.

He said applying N fertiliser at the optimum rate for the anticipated yield or applying it strategically during the growing season could improve yield and grain protein.

 “Applications of N up to mid-stem elongation build the foundation for yield and have relatively little effect on protein, while later applications of N can be used to maintain or increase protein, but have little or no effect on yield. Applying N between the flag leaf emergence and flowering stages of crop growth can result in greater increases in grain protein concentration.”

Dr McDonald said the demand for N was driven by crop growth rate and the pattern of N uptake would reflect the changes in growth rates during the growing season.

For further details go to www.grdc.com.au/media-news