Farmers using minimum or zero tillage techniques in the Cowra area are focused on retaining the soil moisture, nutrients and structural properties of their biggest asset.
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However, some farmers are concerned that plant nutrition may be constrained as a result of these tillage practices.
Central Tablelands Local Land Services is holding an event in Cowra on Thursday, February 23 at the NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) Cowra Agricultural Research and Advisory Station Pridham Centre, starting at 12pm.
There will be a variety of guest speakers.
Phil Cranney, Senior Land Services Officer Pastures, Central Tablelands Local Land Services said: “this is a very productive mixed farming area and farmers know the right cropping and livestock mix for their business”.
“We are not recommending big changes to current livestock and cropping systems, it is about presenting the latest research,” Mr Cranney said.
Peter Watt, Senior Agronomist with Elders in Cowra said that, “conservation tillage practices have been our saviour in the dry years, but to use a rugby analogy, you have to play what’s in front of you”.
Conservation tillage practices have been our saviour in the dry years, but to use a rugby analogy, you have to play what’s in front of you.- Agronomist Peter Watt
“It’s a combination of issues: wheel tracks and flood damage, stubborn weeds like fleabane, prickly lettuce and wireweed, and now some concern around pH and phosphorus stratification throughout the soil profile,” Mr Watt said.
“As a result, some farmers are considering strategic cultivation maybe incorporating lime as well, in order to maximise production for the following years,” Mr Watt added.
Phosphorus stratification will be addressed by NSW DPI research and development agronomist, Col McMaster.
NSW DPI development officer, Helen Burns, will discuss the potential to address soil acidity issues to benefit legume production.
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