Growing lupins with wide row spacing in the northern agricultural zone

Published: 1 Feb 2019

In 2016, the Grains Industry Association of Western Australia (GIWA) estimated that 357,000 hectares of lupins were sown in WA, with 185,000ha being sown in the Geraldton port zone (51.8 per cent of WA total). In this zone, the largest area is sown to wheat, followed by lupins and then canola. Discovering systems to improve the yield of lupins is financially vital to the zone (and WA), as areas sown to lupins have rapidly declined since the late 1990s. Part of the reason for the decline is that canola varieties are now available that are well adapted to northern lupin production areas.

To understand some of the reasons why growers were struggling with lupins, the Geraldton RCSN port zone members wanted to identify successful lupin growers in their port zone and then ask them what they were doing differently. As a result of these interviews, a collection of case studies of growers in the western region documenting real data and experiences has been developed.

Case studies of 10 growers who have adopted lupins into their farming system in the Geraldton port zone are included in this booklet, together with relevant on-farm work and recent research that has been conducted on lupins. The agronomy packages that these growers have adopted will be of great interest to lupin growers. As noted by the Geraldton port zone RCSN members, “We need to find out why some farmers are really doing well out of lupins.”

We would like to acknowledge the support of these 10 growers in sharing this knowledge, as grower-to-grower knowledge transfer is invaluable and is often the best way for other growers to adopt new practices. Further acknowledgement is made of the support and information supplied by grower groups in the Geraldton port zone including the Northern Agri Group and Mingenew Irwin Group, all of which have conducted valuable research for their local growers.

We hope that this booklet can provide growers in the western region with the knowledge to assess the risk and rewards and have the confidence to once again successfully establish lupins on their own properties.

THANK YOU! Thank you to each of the 10 growers who shared what they do and why they do it for the broader benefit of the grain growers of the Geraldton port zone.

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Region: West

ISBN: 978-1-921779-61-9 (print)

ISBN: 978-1-921779-62-6 (Online)

GRDC Project Code: CMP1802-001SAX