Welcome to the new-look May edition of the Bulletin where you can find the latest on upcoming events, demonstration site news and resources on soil management and plant health in the Australian vegetable industry. 

UPCOMING EVENTS 

VegPro Irrigation basic skills workshop, SA


This workshop will deliver practical, hands on training to irrigation operators in the vegetable industry. The training will cover: 
  • Water-soil-crop relationships 
  • Understanding and managing the irrigation system 
  • Determining an irrigation schedule that matches crop water needs 
  • Measuring and interpretation of soil moisture monitoring information 
  • Strengths and weaknesses of soil, plant and weather basedapproaches for irrigation decisions. 
Date: Thursday 17 May 2018 
Time: 8:30 am – 3:30 pm (ACST) 
Location: Thorndon Park Produce, Corner of Gawler River Road & Heaslip Road, Angle Vale, SA 5117 

For further information and to register click here

Webinar: Spray technology for vegetable growers - a guide to getting it right


Join this informative and interactive one-hour lunchtime session to get the latest updates from vegetable industry experts, including spray guru Scott Mathew, grower Scott Samwell, and agronomist Stuart Grigg. 

Chemicals play an important role in vegetable production and are regularly used to control insect pests, diseases and weeds. When applying chemicals, aim to maximise the amount reaching the target and minimise the amount reaching off-target areas. Poor spray application techniques can result in reduced control of pests, yield reduction, wasted chemicals, and lower returns to the grower.  

Date: Thursday 24 May 2018 
Time: 12:30-1:30pm (AEST) 
Register: click here

DEMONSTRATION SITE NEWS

Update from Carnarvon, Gingin, Myalup and recap on the Leafy Variety Trial, WA


Dr Doris Blaesing and Dr Len Tesoriero from the Soil Wealth ICP team headed to WA last week with a full program of events and trial updates. 

The week was organised by the VegNET team from vegetablesWA, with the first stop Carnarvon for three days. Here, Doris and Len engaged with growers on better managing soil borne diseases, soil health, crop nutrition and the importance of area wide biosecurity and farm hygiene. In addition to the evening workshops, a number of farms were visited during the day. 

It was then off to the Gingin project demonstration site that is looking at a new humus-like product (Novihum), set up by Center West Exports. We'll be providing updates on this trial over the coming months. 

On Thursday, Doris and Len attended the vegetablesWA Leafy Variety Trial at the Loose Leaf Lettuce Company and engaged with growers, seed company representatives, resellers and input suppliers, to collect new information and project ideas.

Len reported on soil borne disease trials with baby leaf spinach (VG15009), while Doris introduced the new Phase 2 Soil Wealth ICP project (VG16078). 

Friday saw a visit to the University of New England cover crop trial at Ivankovich Farms in Myalup. This is a great example of cooperation between researchers and industry, with Chris Fyfe from the UNE leading and contributions from the cover crop project, SARDI disease diagnostics, Soil Wealth ICP, and importantly agronomist David Gray (monitoring) and the host grower and team on farm. 

The trip concluded with a visit to Swan Systems to investigate smart irrigation management technology, and Organic Farming Systems to learn about new biological products. These discussions will continue with potential linkages to the demonstration sites in WA and other states. 


You can read more about the Gingin demonstration site here, or visit the Facebook page for live updates. 

NEW RESOURCES

Biofumigation


Biofumigation is the use of specialised cover crops, which are grown, mulched and incorporated into the soil prior to cropping. High biomass, especially roots, can provide the traditional benefits of green manure crops, and if done right, naturally occurring compounds from the biofumigant plants can suppress soil-borne pests, diseases and weeds. 

Read this fact sheet to find out more about common biofumigant crops, benefits and how to best manage them in your rotation. 

Reduced till in vegetable production


Reduced till is a system change that relies on keeping the soil in a healthy condition through the use of permanent beds, controlled traffic, cover cropping and crop rotations rather than frequent cultivation. 

Read this fact sheet to find out more about the benefits and challenges of reduced till, including a case study from the Cowra, NSW demonstration site. 

What we're watching: Spray technology for vegetable growers - a guide to getting it right

Opportunity: Diversify your income and be paid for pest & disease R&D and control for Australian greenhouse growers

Do you grow any of the crops listed below and would you like to be help out with research collaboration and R&D trials to help product development for use in protected structures?

  1. Capsicums/Chili 
  2. Snow Peas 
  3. Sugar Snap Peas 
  4. Rubus (Berries) 
  5. Leafy Vegies (Brassica)

The study aims to register more efficient pest and disease control products for our Australian Protected Cropping industry.


For further information please contact: Mr Kia Nikoumanesh, Graduate Research Scientist, Eurofins Agroscience Services Pty Ltd, T: 02 43 228 510, M: 0438 504 736, E: KiaNikoumanesh@eurofins.com

To find out more about the Soil Wealth or ICP projects visit the website, or join the Soil Wealth and ICP Community of Practice online. You can also follow us on Twitter @ProtectingCrops or @SoilWealth for the latest news and updates.

 
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