Soil acidity is limiting grain yield

This project is working closely with grower groups in coordinating improved management of soil acidity in Western Australia and the GRDC Southern Region.

ACHIEVEMENTS

  • Coordination of an industry wide working group intent on doubling the amount of agricultural lime use in Western Australia compared to levels used in 2010.
  • Working to identify and provide solutions to the major barriers to adoption of liming by growers.
  • Development, testing and improvement of tools and calculators designed to better inform users of outcomes if levels of soil acidity on their farms is not managed appropriately.
  • Targeting better management for the 72% of surface (0-10 cm) and 45% of sub-surface (to 30 cm) soils with less than optimal pH.

OVERVIEW

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 in the sub-surface. In coordinating a National effort to effect a step change in management of soil acidity, a whole of industry approach is being taken that will drive change through the coordination of education, extension and training of key private and government advisors. The working group will comprise representatives from government departments and private enterprise, with experience from the lime pit to the farm including mining and transport of agricultural lime. Working closely with grower groups Liebe, West Midlands and the Moora Miling Pasture Improvement groups, this project will also work to test and improve a range of tools and calculators. This project is funded until 2019.

FUNDING

CONTACT

Chris Gazey

Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD)

[email protected]

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