Project Delivery: Wheatbelt NRM, Duli Group (with support from NutraRich)
Contact: Fiona Brayshaw
Website: Wheatbelt NRM Website
Start Date: 2014 End Date: 2017
Site ID: SA00021SA1
Area (Ha): Three sites (10.6 ha, 12.7 ha, 11.8 ha)
The aim of this demonstration is to test the potential soil and crop benefits and practicality of applying compost produced by NutraRich which is sourced from waste supplied by the South Metropolitan Regional Council refuse facility in Perth.
Most WA soils are low in organic matter and nutrients and have low nutrient retention capacity. Crop and pasture production has traditionally relied on regular application of chemical fertilisers to supply nutrients but they do not replenish organic matter. Presence of soil organic matter improves water-use efficiency, nutrient retention and supply, which are elements important for overall soil fertility and health.
The use of composted refuse products as a soil ameliorant in Wheatbelt farming systems of the Avon River Basin could potentially provide a number of benefits including:
1. Assist in the amelioration of soil constraints.
2. Provide nutrients and carbon for broadacre agriculture, enhancing fertiliser use and crop resilience
3. Support the development of markets for the use of composted refuse products.
The use of compost on broad-acre farms in WA is limited by transport costs, therefore this demonstration will use a moderate quality compost to reduce costs. If the benefits are found to outweigh the costs then the product will be worth considering for broad-acre farms.
This demonstration will monitor soil moisture holding capacity, pH, soil biology and cation exchange capacity aswell as crop yield and grain quality on three farm sites in Cadoux that have had compost applied @ 2.5t/ha, 5t/ha and 10t/ha
Project outputs will be added once the trial has been completed.