Project Delivery: Wheatbelt NRM, WA No Till Farmers Assoc.
Contact: Jo Wheeler
Ph: 9670 3100
Website: Wheatbelt NRM Website
Start Date: 2016 End Date: 2017
Site ID: SA00675SA1
This trial aims to improve the soil’s ability to wet-up and increase the canola crop’s germination and yield by using summer scout crops prior to plant the canola break crop.
This project will investigate soil scouting crops to improve canola establishment and yields on non-wetting sands. As we continue to experience increased spring/summer rainfall the concept of summer cropping becomes more feasible, allowing us to investigate the benefits and economic option to have crops growing 9 months of the year instead of 5-6. The inclusion of good break crops in the rotation is essential to keep the cereal crops productive, maintaining ground cover and improve soil health.
Poor establishment of the popular break crop canola on sandy non-wetting soils can be due to low ground cover and erosion, as is the case at this trial site. This trial will explore whether sowing legume and grass ‘scouting’ crops in spring (early October) into a cereal rye brown manure can improve the subsequent canola crop establishment and production, helping to restore the paddock’s overall productivity. By combining accurate GPS sowing and zero tillage, to minimise soil disturbance, the trial aims to take advantage of the additional root pathways to assist water entering the soil after rainfall, as well as provide easy to follow root pathways for the canola crop.
Project outputs will be added once the trial has been completed.