Grains Research and Development

 

GRDC Update Papers

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This page contains papers from the GRDC Update series for both growers and advisers.

To download the proceedings booklets from the 2014 Updates, visit the 2014 Update Proceedings Booklets page.

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  • Are you happy? Identifying the why in you

    Research Updates

    Grains

    Article Date
    02.04.2014
    Presented At
    2014 GRDC Farm Business Update for Growers Naracoorte
    Region
    National, South

    Take home messages:
    • Know and play to your strengths;
    • get your thinking right;
    • invest in yourself; and
    • it's all about choices.

  • Effective farming systems - what skills and approaches lead to successful farming systems?

    Research Updates

    Grains

    Article Date
    02.04.2014
    Presented At
    2014 GRDC Farm Business Update for Growers Clare and Naracoorte

    • The evolution of a farming system should be a function of logical business decision making since the majority of farmers will list profit as a key motivator. Many farm business managers adopt an oversimplified approach to this, farming the way they want to farm, chasing silver bullets or blindly following the benchmarking results of the best farmers. This is totally misleading and often results in the evolution of farming systems that are inappropriate for the manager’s resource base.
    • For the large majority of farm businesses, profitability is driven to the greatest extent by the successful implementation and management of the basics and then incorporating new or emerging technologies at the margins. The environment that farms operate in is dynamic which means that any decision needs to take into account how it will interact with the entire system.
    • Farm managers have been shown to consistently and repeatedly get this process wrong, particularly in times of higher prices when they tend to farm how they would like rather than how they should. This leaves these businesses particularly exposed when prices fall, there are seasonal challenges, or costs rise sharply. The primary focus on systems selection should be to marry it with the farm businesses’ resource base in order to optimise profit. Farming lifestyle can only be sustainably maintained after profit is achieved.
    • Adopting a whole of business or “systems” approach to the decision making process is one way of achieving consistently high profitability as the farming system evolves. Even the simplest decisions are set in a complex and leaky environment and can have significant impacts at the business level.

  • Achieving success - getting there and going on with it

    Research Updates

    Grains

    Article Date
    12.03.2014
    Presented At
    2014 GRDC Farm Business Update for Growers and Advisers Clare and Bendigo

    • Never stop learning.
    • Embrace change.
    • Realise the importance of team work.
    • Make sure you have the right people on your team.
    • Plan.
    • Goals are important.

  • Trends in farm business performance - the stories behind the figures

    Research Updates

    Grains

    Article Date
    12.03.2014
    Presented At
    2014 GRDC Farm Business Update for Growers Clare
    Region
    South

    • Costs are increasing and farm businesses must respond appropriately to ensure future competitiveness.
    • Keep business models simple.
    • Farms need to continue to increase in scale, but maintain outputs per hectare.
    • Organisation skills have a large influence on timeliness of farm operations.
    • Top performing businesses leverage from their investment in machinery and labour.
    • Advisory boards are starting to influence strategy and accountability.

  • Decision making during the cropping season - spring is still the key!

    Research Updates

    Grains

    Article Date
    12.03.2014
    Presented At
    2014 GRDC Farm Business Update for Growers Clare
    Region
    South

    • Aim for an average season and adjust where possible.
    • High input farming is not generally the most profitable strategy.
    • Don’t spend it if you can’t afford to lose it, understand your ability to handle risk.
    • Don’t aim to make money in the good years, instead avoid muck ups and minimise costs every year.
    • Be prepared and do it on time.

  • Latest nematode summer and winter crop rotation results

    Research Updates

    Grains

    Article Date
    07.03.2014
    GRDC Project Code
    DAV00128
    Presented At
    Coonabarabran, Goondiwindi and Mungindi GRDC Grains Research Updates Feb_Mar 2014 by Kirsty Owen and Tim Clewett.
    Region
    North

    Choose tolerant rather than intolerant wheat varieties when P. thornei is present at damaging levels, or risk reducing your yields by 50%.
    One resistant crop in sequence may not be enough to decrease damaging populations of P. thornei.
    P. thornei survived after a sequence of five resistant crops, but in very low populations.
    Management of P. thornei by growing several resistant crops works and populations can be reduced to very low levels. However on-going vigilance by testing soil for nematodes is essential when susceptible crops are planted.

  • Weeds and resistance considerations for awnless barnyard grass chloris and fleabane

    Research Updates

    Grains

    Article Date
    06.03.2014
    GRDC Project Code
    NGA00003, UQ00055, UQ00062, GOA00001
    Presented At
    Mungindi GRDC Grains Research Update March 2014 by Richard Daniel.

    1. Glyphosate resistant and tolerant weeds are a major threat to our reduced tillage cropping systems
    2. Although residual herbicides will limit re-cropping options and will not provide complete control, they are a key part of successful fallow management
    3. Double-knock herbicide strategies (sequential application of two different weed control tactics) are useful tools but the herbicide choices and optimal timings will vary by weed species
    4. Incorporate other weed management tactics e.g. crop competition to assist herbicide control
    5. Cultivation may need to be considered as a salvage option to avoid seed bank replenishment

  • Crown rot and nematodes

    Research Updates

    Grains

    Article Date
    06.03.2014
    GRDC Project Code
    DAN00175
    Presented At
    Coonabarabran, Goondiwindi and Mungindi GRDC Grains Research Updates Feb_Mar 2014 by Steve Simpfendorfer.
    Region
    North

    • Two durum and 10 bread wheat varieties were evaluated in the presence of added or no added crown inoculum across 11 field sites in 2013.
    • Under high crown rot pressure (added CR inoculum) Suntop was 0.42 t/ha, LRPB Lancer 0.51 t/ha, Sunguard 0.61 t/ha and LRPB Spitfire 0.63 t/ha higher yielding than EGA Gregory on average across sites.
    • Where no additional CR was added EGA Gregory had similar yield to other varieties at sites with low background levels of crown rot but was between -0.52 t/ha (Suntop ) to -0.37 t/ha (Sunguard ) lower yielding at sites with medium-high background levels of crown rot.
    • EGA Gregory production should be specifically targeted to paddocks with lower levels of crown rot risk based on testing such as PreDicta B.
    • Some newer wheat varieties have a measurable improvement in their tolerance to crown rot but these current levels are not a complete solution to crown rot. The best varieties still suffered up to 34% and 41% yield loss at the two sites with the highest impact from crown rot infection.

  • The effectiveness of nitrogen application for protein 2012 and 2013

    Research Updates

    Grains

    Article Date
    06.03.2014
    GRDC Project Code
    NGA00003
    Presented At
    Coonabarabran, Goondiwindi and Mungindi
    Region
    North

    1. Foliar application of urea solution provided significant increases in grain protein compared to urea applied by streambar or spread, in a series of eleven trials during 2012 and 2013
    2. The level of protein benefit was NOT sufficient to generate a net benefit in any trial
    3. Timing differences were less clear, with best results generally from application during late head emergence through to the early milk stage.
    4. The highest level of nitrogen recovery in grain protein was 37% in 2012 and 28% in 2013
    5. Grain grade price differentials of at least $20-40/t are necessary to warrant foliar application for protein accumulation unless nitrogen recovery can be increased dramatically
    6. Assessment of residual soil nitrogen showed total grain and soil recovery from Spread urea was >85% at Weemelah in 2013, despite generally dry conditions following application
    7. Application of spread urea at planting provided the most consistent and highest level of grain protein across the dryland sites
    8. Targeting nitrogen budgets to maximise yield for soil moisture availability is expected to be more profitable than trying to manipulate protein with late nitrogen application

  • Where is herbicide resistance taking our farming systems

    Research Updates

    Grains

    Article Date
    06.03.2014
    GRDC Project Code
    UA00113, UA00124
    Presented At
    Mungindi GRDC Grains Research Update March 2014 by Chris Preston.
    Region
    North

    Herbicide resistance occurs due to the intensive use of herbicides from a single mode of action. Using herbicides for weed management will inevitably lead to more herbicide resistance. While there are other technologies available for controlling weeds, none will completely replace herbicides. More sophisticated use of herbicides and adoption of seed set control tactics are essential to preserve the utility of herbicides into the future.