Stubble research featured predominantly at BCG’s Main Field Day at Berriwillock on September 9.
During the event, farmers had an opportunity to witness how applied field research is seeking to resolve issues that commonly arise in retained stubble systems.
One such issue is identifying the optimum seeder row spacing, taking into consideration yield, weed competition, sowing efficiency and easy of sowing through crop residue.
As part of one of the five trial tours being run at the Main Field Day, a research trial investigating wheat variety performance under three different row spacings was visited.
BCG research manager Claire Browne, who is also heading the Victorian and Tasmanian component of the GRDC stubble initiative (Project No. BWD00024), led a discussion about the the performance of wheat varieties when sown at different row spacings (9″, 12″ and 15″).
Claire was joined by research agronomist Nick Poole (FAR Australia) who provided insight into how crop performance was influenced by crop row spacing.
During an afternoon presentation Dodgshun Medlin machinery specialist Matt Elliott discussed seeder technologies.
A discussion about controlled traffic farming (CTF) led by CTF Solutions consultant Wayne Chapman followed Matt’s presentation.
Wayne focused his talk on guidance options and seeder tracking for accurate guided row sowing.
While there are clear benefits that come from CTF if stubble retention is the aim, how this system fits in a Mallee environment, and on lighter Mallee soils, has been questioned.
BCG, on behalf of the Australian Controlled Traffic Farming Association, is currently undertaking research into CTF in the low rainfall zone at Bulga (west of Swan Hill) using farm scale machinery. More about this research can be found here.
A full day of information was presented to farmers at BCG’s 2015 research site at Berriwillock on September 9.
For more information visit the BCG website.