As they say, all good things must come to an end and here we are at the tail end of 2021. It has, again, been a busy year for our farmers and our team.
Thriving Fodder Options For Mixed Farmers
In our flagship project, “Optimising Fodder Options in Mixed Farming Systems”, the seven Fodder Plan demonstration sites have been continuing to implement their plans. We’ve seen great success, especially with some of the more innovative strategies for increasing ground cover and filling summer feed gaps.
Thanks to the early wet season experienced in 2021, we have Kikuyu thriving in Brookton with plans to disc in serradella. Also in Brookton, we have 14 species of grass herbs and legumes planted into the inter rows of a saltbush plantation. In Wickepin, lucerne and chicory and doing are doing very well, and in Newdegate we have spring/summer perennial native grasses being sown.
Events Took Centre Stage
After the hiatus in large, face-to-face gatherings during 2020, this year has seen a return of our events series.
We kicked off by showcasing the SWARM paddock-scale carbon modelling tool developed by Dr Jolene Otway in both Pingelly and Wickepin. We’ve hosted two field walks, one looking at a successful saltbush project in Goomalling and the other exploring a range of fodder strategies that have been implemented in Brookton. We topped that off with a composting workshop in Wongan Hills and a feral animal control workshop in Wyalkatchem.
It was great to see a return of the Dowerin Field Days where we launched our Building Beetle Highways dung beetle project.
This year has seen three projects come to an end. Our ‘Local Sources of Composted Waste In Regenerative Agricultural Systems’ was finalised with some excellent results. You can read more about that project here, and hear from participants in these wonderful videos from Rob Grylls of Gabbin and our Gingin egg producer partner.
The ‘SWARM Carbon Modelling Tool’ partnership wrapped up and the Soil CRC project looking at the function of soil carbon in regenerative agriculture also came to an end.
Planning has commenced in earnest for Talkin’ Soil Health which will be held in York on 17 and 18 March next year. The biennial event is a much anticipated occasion on the soil health calendar. Talkin’ Soil Health also incorporates the awarding of the regional Soil Health Champions and we’re looking forward to another fabulous event.
We’re also looking forward to announcing some exciting new projects that are in the pipeline.
We’d like to wish all our farmers, partners and the Wheatbelt community a wonderful festive season. Thanks for your support and we’re looking forward to working with you again in 2022.
These projects are supported by funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.