Farming Ahead Articles
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No. 163 August 2005 p.40-42
Balance nitrogen and water
supply to lift yields
Significant nitrogen exists in the soil but until the crop and pasture
residues are broken down by soil micro-organisms, the nitrogen remains
unavailable for plant use. This article details how soil nitrogen becomes
available to plants and how better matching of nitrogen and water supplies
can optimise crop yields.
By Jeff Baldock
No. 162 July 2005 p.45
Bacteria essential for crop
Soil microbes play an essential role in supplying nutrients to crops.
This article outlines the role nitrifying bacteria play in supplying nitrate
nitrogen to plants, together with the soil management and environmental
factors which affect this process.
By: Gupta Vadakattu
No. 161 June 2005 p. 48-50
Rural towns seek salinity
solution in desalination
Salinity is costing Australia millions of dollars each year in lost crops
and damaged infrastructure. But innovative research and co-operation are
paving the way to better management of rural water resources. This article
details an exciting project to desalinate saline water in the Western
No. 160 May 2005 p. 36-37
Nurture sands to stimulate
Many producers neglect sandy soils believing they have poor yield potential
and are not worth valuable fertiliser inputs. But as this article shows,
encouraging microbes in sandy soils by retaining crop residues can lift
yield potential, while improving structural stability.
By Gupta Vadakattu and Janet Paterson
No. 160 May 2005 p. 7-9
Native food industry set to expand
While Australia’s Aboriginal population has been feasting on native
foods for centuries, ‘bush tucker’, as it is colloquially
known, is now establishing itself as a gourmet food worldwide. This article
outlines the emergence of a cohesive Australian native foods industry
and the steps needed to make it successful.
By Sally Holt re Maarten Ryder
No. 159 April 2005 p. 55-57
Saline water disposal
next step in drainage debate
Many Western Australian farmers frustrated with the limited value of plant-based
solutions to the dryland salinity crisis have been overjoyed at the ability
of engineered drainage systems to reclaim previously unproductive farm
land. But further research is required to clarify the potential downstream
impacts of drainage schemes.
By Janet Paterson re Tom Hatton
No. 158 March 2005 p.33
Manage carbon to sustain
Soil organic carbon plays a critical role in the biological, chemical
and physical health of a soil. But little is known about how crop management
impacts on soil organic carbon levels and thus soil health. This article
describes how a new approach to understanding this relationship could
help farmers better manage soil organic carbon.
by Jan Skjemstad, CSIRO Land and Water and CRC for Greenhouse Accounting
No. 158 March 2005 p.38-40
Variety choice key to
successive wheat yields
When combined with minimum tillage, intensive wheat rotations can provide
significant financial and environmental benefits but some growers have
experienced yield losses in second and subsequent wheat crops. This article
details how the discovery of the yield constraint in sequential wheat
crops will lead to more reliable grain yields.
by David Roget
No. 157 February 2005 p.48-50
Poor water use in wheat
an international phenomenon
A CSIRO international analysis has found wheat crops in low-rainfall areas
across the globe commonly fail to realise their yield potential because
of low water-use efficiency. This article examines why crops in south-eastern
Australia yield only half their potential and what farmers can do to improve
water-use efficiency in wheat.
by Victor Sadras, CSIRO Land and Water and John Angus, CSIRO Plant Industry
No. 157 February 2005 p.51
Rhizoctonia a disease menace
for many crops
Rhizoctonia root rot of wheat is caused by the fungus, Rhizoctonia solani,
and is a major disease of wheat crops across southern Australia —
causing an estimated $77 million each year in lost production. This article
details how Rhizoctonia operates in farming systems and the management
tools that can be used to control the fungus.
by Gupta Vadakattu (CSIRO Land and Water) and Janet Paterson, Kondinin
No. 157 February 2005 p.58-59
Fences no boundary to
One way farmers gather information about land management strategies is
to look over the fence and see what their neighbours are doing. This article
details an exciting new project which will enable producers to look across
a virtual on-line fenceline to improve management of deep drainage and
salinity issues on-farm.
by Paul Hutchinson
For further information please contact the Communication