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Catalogue: GRDC Media
Western Australian researchers investigating biochar have unearthed some promising results about its properties... UWA Institute of Agriculture Associate Professor Daniel Murphy, who is leading WA research under the GRDC biochar project, said new studies had also shown that biochar did not affect the rate at which nitrogen was released from the decomposition of organic matter in soil... "Biochar is a stable form of carbon which can remain in the soil for hundreds of years - we need to be very sure about its attributes before making recommendations about its use," Professor Murphy said...
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Catalogue: Ground Cover
Growers in WA are using powerful deep-ripper implements to break through hardpans and allow plant roots and nutrients to reach deeper, more productive depths.. Trials were undertaken at three sites using various types of rippers and configurations for depth and spacing, including machinery depths to 20, 30 and 40 centimetres and tyne spacings of 30 and 60cm... "The results reinforce the importance of doing small plot trials before applying extreme treatments across paddocks, as well as knowing the characteristics of the subsoil and using an experienced machinery operator - to minimise the risks of negative impacts such as bringing too much clay or rock to the surface," she says...
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Catalogue: GRDC Media
Tiny bugs tackle big crop disease problems.. Microscopic soil-dwelling actinobacteria are showing promise as biocontrol agents for wheat and canola diseases... Dr Roper said to be considered successful, any potential actinobacteria biocontrol agents must suppress the fungal disease effectively, survive either in the plant tissues or within the rhizoplane of growing plants and be easy to culture and inoculate on to plants to allow for realistic application methods in the field...
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Catalogue: GRDC Media
Tiny bugs tackle big crop disease problems.. Microscopic soil-dwelling actinobacteria are showing promise as biocontrol agents for wheat and canola diseases... Dr Roper said to be considered successful, any potential actinobacteria biocontrol agents must suppress the fungal disease effectively, survive either in the plant tissues or within the rhizoplane of growing plants and be easy to culture and inoculate on to plants to allow for realistic application methods in the field...
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Catalogue: Ground Cover
A Western Australian study shows that applying biochar made from wheat chaff and eucalyptus wood may have some negative effects on sandy soils.. To assess the impact of biochar on nitrogen leaching in a sandy soil from Meckering, WA, Mr Dempster ran another glasshouse trial and compared the results to those achieved by adding clay - another ameliorant being used by some growers to enhance soil fertility... The results showed yield decreased significantly from 2.1t/ha to 1.7t/ha when biochar was banded into the subsoil...
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Catalogue: GRDC Updates (West)
Mention of a trade name or company in this publication does not imply endorsement of any product or company by the Department of Agriculture and Food, Western Australia... Overall, the production and supply of fertiliser accounted for a large proportion (35%) of the GHG produced from wheat production, and occurred in the pre-farm stage (Table 1)... Overall, constraints have a far smaller effect on heavy soils than on sand plain soils...
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Catalogue: GRDC Final Reports
pH measurements taken from wet and dry soils can vary if we measure the pH in water because the soil has a "background" salt concentration... To minimise the effect of salt concentration in soil on pH values, pH is now measured in 0.01 molar calcium chloride... As soil testing for phosphorus was originally conducted on the top 10 cm of soil, so the soil pH was only measured for the top 10 cm...
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Catalogue: GRDC Updates
Soil tests measure nutrient supply while plant tests can provide a more accurate indicator of nutrient availability, especially where there may be significant sub soil reserves (K and/or S) and/or the nutrients are only supplied in very small quantities i.e. trace elements... The number is large enough to be representative for WA and to summarise the nutritional status of WA soils... Smart fertiliser decisions will be based on what nutrients are measured in the soil and profitable fertiliser returns depend upon the adequate supply of all plant essential nutrients...
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Catalogue: Ground Cover
Image of a soil pit showing lime injection.. Soil pit showing where lime (stained purple) has been injected into the soil... The trial was established in 2001 at South Bodallin in the eastern WA wheatbelt when limesand was injected to a depth of 25 to 30cm, using air to blow the lime down behind a set of deep-ripping tynes...
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Catalogue: GRDC Updates (West)
The effect of high yields on soil phosphorous (P), potassium (K), and sulphur (S) is small compared to the effect on soil nitrogen (N)... At least 30% of samples were low in K (< 60 mg/kg) from the shires of Chapman Valley, Greenough, Irwin, Mingenew, Three Springs, Wongan Ballidu, Cunderdin, Brookton, Pingelly, Gnowangerup and eastern parts of Cunderdin... Smart fertiliser decisions will be based on what nutrients are measured in the soil and profitable fertiliser returns depend upon the adequate supply of all plant essential nutrients...
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