Soil acidity is limiting grain yield

While soil acidity is well understood, a disconnect has limited the adoption of appropriate practices, including soil testing to depth to determine pH and management including application of agricultural lime at a suitable rate where soil pH is less than the target pH 5.5 in the surface or pH 4.8 ...

Harnessing the nitrogen cycle through novel solutions

Sustainable land management requires that we optimise nitrogen (N) supply for plant production and also minimise soil nitrogen losses through nitrate (NO3) leaching and nitrous oxide (N2O) gas emissions. To achieve this it is necessary to understand how management practices ...

Minimising the impact of soil compaction on crop yield

Restricted root growth and ‘haying off’ are often associated with the presence of a soil compaction layer at depth which constrains access to water and nutrients. The risk of waterlogging can also increase on susceptible soils. It is estimated lower grain yield and higher costs result ...

Subsoil constraints – understanding and management

Subsoil constraints cost WA growers more than $600 million each year in lost production (Herbert 2009). These include acidity, nutrient disorders (deficiencies, toxicities), compaction, sodicity, waterlogging and salinity. Often one or more of these constraints are present and can decrease root d ...

New approaches to assessing gravel & sampling inverted soils

Gravel soils

Machine vision or ‘automated digital image analysis’ is an untested approach to assessing soil properties on gravel soils. Digital analysis provides rapid output and has the potential for use in soil science for measuring specific attributes of soil, particularly ...

Innovative approaches to managing subsoil acidity

Soil acidity (low soil pH) costs Western Australian (WA) agriculture an estimated $500 million each year in lost productivity and more recent assessments have increased this to potentially more than $1B. Yet in many areas soil acidity continues to get worse despite a recent and encouraging increa ...

Organic residues & soil mixing alter plant available nitrogen

Despite our understanding of plant nitrogen (N) uptake and soil N dynamics in arable systems, the supply and demand of N are infrequently matched as a result of variable seasonal and soil conditions. Consequently, inefficient N use often leads to constrained production and can contribute to poten ...

Managing Soil Organic Matter

Most growers view soil organic matter as a key component of soil productivity, but the capacity to increase organic carbon (measurable component) in soil is constrained by soil type, climate and – to a lesser extent – management. Detectable changes usually occur slowly, over decades t ...

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