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Welcome to the April edition of the Bulletin where you can find the latest on upcoming events, demonstration site news and resources on soil management and plant health in the Australian vegetable industry. 

UPCOMING EVENTS 

Richmond demo site discussion meeting, TAS

Harvest Farms and the Soil Wealth ICP team have teamed-up to explore the application of organic soil amendments on babyleaf crop yield and quality.

The team at Harvest Farms have installed equipment to monitor wind, rain, evapotranspiration, leaf wetness, soil temperature and soil moisture as well as a pheromone sticky trap.

Date: Monday 15 April 2019
Time: 3:00-5:00pm (with free light refreshments)
Location: South East Trade Training Centre, 10 Forcett Street Sorell (on Sorell School farm)

Click here for further information and to RSVP. 

TAPG Precision Agriculture Expo, TAS

This unique one-day event organised by the Tasmanian Agricultural Productivity Group (TAPG) showcases the latest in precision agriculture, with presentations, trade displays and demonstrations.

Visit the Soil Wealth ICP team at the trade display at this industry leading event.

Date: Wednesday 17 April 2018
Time: 9:00am - 4:00pm
Location: Hagley Farm School, 2508 Meander Valley Road, Hagley, TAS 7292

Click here for further information. 

DEMONSTRATION SITE NEWS

Exploring the application of precision agriculture at Koo Wee Rup, VIC


Schreurs & Sons and the Soil Wealth ICP team have partnered to explore the application of precision agriculture in celery, leek and baby leaf production systems. The demonstration site is located at Adam’s Cora Lynn farm, about 80km south-east of Melbourne. 

We're aiming to improve nutrition, irrigation and drainage management, and insect pest and beneficial monitoring as a basis for soil and crop health. To achieve this, we’ve used technology like EM38 mapping, gridded soil sampling, variable rate fertiliser spreading, remote monitoring insect pest and beneficial identification traps with cameras, as well as drones.

Adam, his agronomist, Stuart Grigg, and demo site coordinator from the Soil Wealth ICP team, Carl Larsen, have been busy planning and implementing the trial at the site over the past 12-months. 

The activities have included: 
  • Gridded and pre-plant soil testing 
  • Development of a nutrition program and variable rate spreading 
  • Monitoring of drainage and crop health using drones 
  • Plant tissue testing 
  • Installation and use of remote monitoring insect traps
  • Yield assessment.  

The results and analysis from each of these activities were discussed at a farm walk this week. Over 30 people braved the cold, wet conditions to hear from industry experts, walk the trial plot and see the results first-hand.

Missed the farm walk? Catch up on the key findings with this case study.

You find out more about the demonstration site on our website, or head to the Facebook page for regular updates. 

NEW RESOURCES

Strip-tillage in the field - Jeff McSpedden, NSW case study

Strip-till is a system of cultivation that works strips of soil where the crop will be planted or sown and leaves most of the soil covered and undisturbed.

The benefits of strip-till identified by Jeff include stubble retention, improved moisture retention, greater efficacy and reduced diesel usage.

Controlled Traffic Farming with Harvest Moon, TAS

Soil Wealth and ICP present this podcast about controlled traffic farming, featuring the best practice agriculture of Harvest Moon, with Agriculture Director Mark Kable, John McPhee, a CTF researcher from the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture, as well as grower James Addison. Keep roads as roads, and beds as beds for high performing soil and crops.

What we're watching: Soil Testing for Vegetable Crops with Doris Blaesing and Gordon Rogers

Doris Blaesing and Gordon Rogers from the Soil Wealth ICP team presented a webinar on how to get the most from soil testing for vegetable crops. You can watch the recording here

Call for membership: Soil Wealth ICP Partnership Network 

Do you provide products, services, technologies or know-how to vegetable producers in one or several of the project focus areas?

The purpose of partnerships is to actively build industry capacity. It is especially important for vegetable producers, their staff and advisers to understand current and future innovations. 

If you're interested in joining the Partnership Network click here, or contact Doris Blaesing for more information. 

To find out more about the Soil Wealth or ICP projects visit the website, or join the Soil Wealth and ICP Community of Practice online. You can also follow us on Twitter @ProtectingCrops or @SoilWealth for the latest news and updates.