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Trials to lift production efficiencies

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CSIRO complex systems team leader Dr Lindsay Bell heads the ground-breaking GRDC-funded Northern Farming Systems project exploring ways to boost whole-farm cropping productivity... The Northern Farming Systems Project involves one core trial site, six regional sites and computer-based modelling... The systems are comparing management strategies that influence: crop intensity (the number of crops sown per year) by altering soil water thresholds for planting crops; crop diversity by increasing the frequency of break crops and/or legume crops in the sequence; nutrient supply by altering crop nutrient budgets and adding organic amendments; and integrated practices such as cover crops and pasture rotations to restore or build soil quality...