Case studies

Enable Filters
 

Resources

The effect of custom made composts on the performance of a carrot crop and soil health

The effect of custom made composts on the performance of a carrot crop and soil health
31 May 2018

Demonstration site report prepared for VG15010 A Multi-faceted approach to soilborne disease management by Francis Tedesco, Center West Exports, Justin Wolfgang, C-Wise, Doris Blaesing, RMCG

A large-scale compost trial was conducted with Center West Export (CWE) and C-Wise in the Gingin area of Western Australia (WA).

This report presents the methodology, key findings and recommendations from the trial, including an in-depth desktop review of the main Pythium species affecting carrots in Australia identified as P. sulcatum (in most cases) and P. violae (in some cases).

Damping off in spinach; Best bet fungicide and biologicals - trial 2016-2017

Damping off in spinach; Best bet fungicide and biologicals - trial 2016-2017
17 May 2018

Short report by Len Tesoriero and Donna Lucas

A preliminary field trial was conducted to evaluate the efficacy of chemical and biological control treatments for damping off pathogens in spinach. We demonstrated that three fungicide treatments significantly reduced the area of diseased plants within beds, however, they did not significantly increase overall spinach yield compared to untreated controls. This is most likely due to other variables affecting plant growth in the trial area.

Three Vital Practice Changes at Rob Hinrichsen’s Kalfresh: A Case Study

Three Vital Practice Changes at Rob Hinrichsen’s Kalfresh: A Case Study
30 Nov 2017

Six years ago, Rob Hinrichsen and his team at Kalfresh decided to focus on four key practices – controlled tra c, cover crops, soil biology and compost – to improve the soil health across their farms. The main drivers were to improve crop yield and quality, as well as the sustainability of the business.

Rob’s emphasis on softer tillage, boosting organic matter with compost and cover crops has helped the soil recover and support a healthy population of beneficial soil organisms. Rob supplements the naturally occurring biology by using specific beneficial organisms to improve the robustness of his farming system.

This case study provides insights into some of the main changes involving controlled traffic, cover crops and compost at the Kalfresh demonstration site in Queensland.

Koo Wee Rup Demonstration Site: Practice Change Case Study

Koo Wee Rup Demonstration Site: Practice Change Case Study
29 Nov 2017

The Schreurs family have been farming on the Koo Wee Rup swamps in Gippsland, Victoria since 1963. After noticing a decline in soil condition, resulting in waterlogging and an increase in weed and disease pressure, the Schreurs partnered with the Soil Wealth and ICP team to trial a range of different cover crops to improve the overall quality and productivity of the farm from 2014 to 2017. Schreurs & Sons farm run by Adam, Ben and Chris produces a variety of different products including celery, leeks and baby leaf spinach.

This case study provides an overview and lessons learnt from trialling different cover crops at the demonstration site in Cora Lynn, Victoria.

Mt Barker Demonstration Site: Practice Change Case Study

Mt Barker Demonstration Site: Practice Change Case Study
28 Nov 2017

Growers, Scott and Kent Samwell, have always been using cover crops to rest the soil between brassica plantings and prevent erosion on the hilly land. They mainly planted rye grass and oats, and have been trying new types over the past 4-5 years, including rye grass mixed with legumes. They continue to be interested in investigating further options. This includes rye grass, faba beans, vetch and triticale, and potentially lucerne and rye corn.

This case study presents insights and lessons from trialling different cover crops and IPM at the Eastbrook Vegetable Farms demonstration site in Mt Barker in South Australia.

Reducing tillage in vegetable crops: Is it worthwhile?

Reducing tillage in vegetable crops: Is it worthwhile?
27 Nov 2017

Reduced tillage can produce similar or better yields than more aggressive conventional tillage. It opens the door to improving soil health.

This case study outlines the pros and cons of reducing the intensity of cultivation in vegetable production systems. It is based on lessons learnt from three demonstration sites conducted as part of the Soil Wealth and Integrated Crop Protection (ICP) projects (2014 – 2016).

What is compost worth? Using compost in Australian vegetable systems

What is compost worth? Using compost in Australian vegetable systems
5 Jun 2017

This case study outlines the economic considerations when using compost in vegetable production systems. It is based on lessons learned from several Soil Wealth and Integrated Crop Protection (ICP) demonstration sites, during the period 2014 to 2016.

The costs of compost are largely driven by the type and quality of the compost; freight costs depends on distance; and spreading/incorporation costs depend on application rates, type of compost, machinery required, travelling time and the scale of the work.

The benefits will depend on the individual farm as well as the objectives for using compost, for example increase organic matter or prevent be collapse. The main benefits of using compost are increased organic matter, adding nutrients to the soil, increased water holding capacity of the soil, and disease suppression. It is important to consider other practices that may need to change in conjunction with compost application, such as tillage, irrigation and crop protection requirements.

What is a cover crop worth? Cover crops in Australian vegetable systems

What is a cover crop worth? Cover crops in Australian vegetable systems
4 Jun 2017

This case study outlines the economic considerations when using cover crops in vegetable production systems. It is based on lessons learned from several Soil Wealth – ICP demonstration sites, during the period 2014 to 2016.

One of the most important considerations is being clear about the purpose of using cover crops in the farm system system as it influences the way you may judge costs and benefits and the timing of these.

The overall benefits will depend on each situation. However, to figure out what works for you on your farm and a specific purpose, talk to others who have used cover crops for a similar purpose / situation; trial cover crops or include a test strip if possible.

Implementing IPM on farm - experiences from leading growers: Houston’s Farms, Tasmania

Implementing IPM on farm - experiences from leading growers: Houston’s Farms, Tasmania
29 May 2017

Houston’s Farm, in southern Tasmania, grow a range of ready to eat leafy salad products including lettuce, brassica leafy vegetables, beets and spinach.

Despite a positive experience with IPM in the control of Lettuce Aphid, Houston’s Farm were reluctant to adopt IPM based on only one experience. One of the biggest challenges to adopting IPM was regular monitoring, including looking for beneficial species. Now, Houston’s Farm have developed their own IPM manual to train new staff, including photos of pest and beneficial species, and other information such as appropriate pesticides.

To find out more read this practical case study.

Implementing IPM on farm - experiences from leading growers: Jerome Thompson, Werribee South Farm Supplies, Werribee South VIC

Implementing IPM on farm - experiences from leading growers: Jerome Thompson, Werribee South Farm Supplies, Werribee South VIC
9 Feb 2017

Jerome Thompson, Werribee South Farm Supplies CRT Store branch manager, supplies agricultural products to about 110 vegetable farmers in the Werribee South region.

Over the past 20 years Jerome has observed a progressive change in grower adoption of integrated pest management (IPM). Jerome notes opportunities for greater adoption of IPM through growers improving their skills in monitoring pests, timing sprays and identification of beneficial species.

Read this practical case study to learn more from leading growers.

Implementing IPM on farm - experiences from leading growers: Daniel Fragapane, Werribee South VIC

Implementing IPM on farm - experiences from leading growers: Daniel Fragapane, Werribee South VIC
19 Jan 2017

Werribee South vegetable grower, Daniel Fragapane, runs a 42 hectare farm growing cauliflowers and broccoli for supermarket chain ALDI. He adopted IPM on his Werribee South farm following a recommendation from his cousins.

Daniel has been impressed with the results he’s seen in this crop, following the use of IPM. The biggest challenge for him has been time scheduling of control options, such as avoiding peak UV periods for caterpillar control with products such as Dipel in summer.

Daniel has managed these challenges through a combination of targeted control, including strategic location spraying rather than whole of farm, and using alternative products when required.

Read this practical case study to learn more from leading growers.

Implementing IPM on farm - experiences from leading growers: Peter Schreurs and Sons, Devon Meadows VIC

Implementing IPM on farm - experiences from leading growers: Peter Schreurs and Sons, Devon Meadows VIC
5 Dec 2016

Peter Schreurs and Sons grow a range of vegetable crops on their 180 hectare farm in Devon Meadows near Cranbourne in Victoria. Leeks are the main crop in the business, but they also produce cos lettuce, endive, kohl-rabi, wombok and radicchio.

On the farm, Darren Schreurs is responsible for controlling pest and disease in the crops. Darren first encountered Integrated Pest Management (IPM) when he was trying to deal with mites and thrips in their leek crop.

Read this practical case study to learn more from leading growers.

Implementing IPM on farm - experiences from leading growers: Schreurs and Sons, Clyde VIC

Implementing IPM on farm - experiences from leading growers: Schreurs and Sons, Clyde VIC
9 Nov 2016

Schreurs and Sons are one of the largest celery producers in Australia. Production of celery by the family business has relied on IPM for well over a decade.

The original drivers for exploring an IPM option were borne out of problems relying on a pesticide- based strategy. After initial trials, where IPM was proven effective, the approach was implemented on all farms and crops.

Read this practical case study to learn more from leading growers.

Soil and plant health benefits from using compost: A long-term case study on Baldivis Farms

Soil and plant health benefits from using compost: A long-term case study on Baldivis Farms
10 Oct 2016

This case study provides a unique long-term grower perspective on using compost on a commercial vegetable farm.

Have you ever wondered what the potential benefits to soil and plant health are from using compost? Thinking about using compost? Need to know the questions to ask a supplier of compost?

Learn more from Sam Calameri of Baldivis Farms in Western Australia who started trialling compost on-farm more than 10 years ago.