Wimmera Mallee growers to down tools and soak up advice

Date: 29 Jun 2012

Wimmera Mallee growers to down tools and soak up advice

Grain growers in Victoria’s Wimmera and Mallee regions are being guided through the remainder of the 2012 cropping season and into harvest with the latest agronomic information.

The Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) will next month host grains research Updates at Sea Lake and Dimboola where growers will gather to learn about developments in research and practices that can have a positive impact on-farm.

The Sea Lake Update will be held on Tuesday, July 17, at St Mary’s Primary School hall, while the Dimboola Update will be on Wednesday, July 18, at the local football clubrooms.

A line-up of expert speakers from throughout Australia will address the Updates on topics and issues of most relevance and importance to local growers.

GRDC Southern regional Panel chair David Shannon says water use efficiency (WUE), a subject constantly front of mind for growers in the Wimmera and Mallee, will be discussed in detail at the Updates.

“Dr James Hunt from the CSIRO will provide insights into those farming practices that can be implemented to increase WUE,” Mr Shannon said.

“Practices such as stubble management, break crops and sowing time can all have an influence on converting available moisture into yields and these will be outlined by Dr Hunt.”

The economics and risks of nitrogen (N) nutrition will also be detailed at both Updates. Tim McClelland from BCG will speak about current yield and N requirement predictions, while Agrivision’s Kate Wilson will discuss lessons derived from the 2011 season and topdressing decisions confronting growers.

Advice on how to achieve critical coverage with in-crop spraying will be provided by spray consultant Bill Gordon who will offer tips on best practice spray technology and management.

CSIRO researcher Clive Kirkby will tackle the topic of building and utilising soil organic matter, emphasising the means of and value in encouraging stubble break down with soil microbes.

The Sea Lake Update will feature a presentation by Matt Witney from Dodgshun Medlin who will address the chickpea agronomy and harvest issues that Mallee growers should be prepared for this season.

The Dimboola program includes a segment on snail management by agronomic consultant and GRDC Southern Regional Panel member Bill Long, as well as a discussion led by farmer Peter Walsh on the pros and cons of employing the use of a disc seeder.

Mr Shannon encouraged local grain growers to down tools for half a day to attend the Updates which had been organised in conjunction with farming systems groups BCG and Mallee Sustainable Farming.

“The programs developed for the Updates have involved considerable collaboration with local farmer representatives to ensure the topics are timely and regionally relevant and that the speakers selected are authorities on each of those issues,” he said.

Both Updates will run from 9 am to 1pm. Registration begins at 8.15am and lunch will be provided.

More information about the Updates can be obtained by visiting www.grdc.com.au/updatedates or by contacting ORM on 03 5441 6176 or email admin@orm.com.au.

ENDS

GRDC Project Code: ORM00001

Media releases and other media products can be found at www.grdc.com.au/media


For more information: Matt McCarthy, ORM
03 5441 6176

Contact: Sharon Watt, Porter Novelli
0409 675100

GRDC Project Code ORM00001