What Growers Need To Know This Season…


Using satellites and drones to support on-farm decision-making, connectivity for remote locations and the latest on fall armyworm (FAW) management are some of the key topics on offer for growers and advisers at the next major grains information events in southern Queensland and northern New South Wales.

The next series of the Grains Research and Development Corporation’s (GRDC) Updates starts in July and runs through to mid-August.

The main two-day GRDC Grains Research Update will be held in Goondiwindi on July 30 and 31. Designed to provide the latest research information to grain growers and their farm advisers the series is focused on the current winter season and upcoming summer crops.

GRDC Grower Relations Manager – North, Rebecca Raymond is well equipped to offer insights into the value of the update series. A former research and extension agronomist, who has worked in the Goondiwindi region and across the Darling Downs, she says the events provided critical information to inform on-farm decision making.

“The GRDC update programs are developed in close consultation with local committees, so they covered off on the topics important at a regional level,” Ms Raymond says.

From a GRDC perspective they are also an invaluable opportunity to share big picture and innovative new technology research with growers, advisers and other industry stakeholders.

“For that reason, we have a section of the program dedicated to decision support and data management, but we’re also offering the latest in FAW management; along with a seasonal update on cereal rust and disease management as part of a really comprehensive program.”

The Goondiwindi Grains Research Update agenda includes:

Decision support and data management:

  • Tim Neale from Data Farming will discuss opportunities for on-farm decision making and data management using high resolution earth observation satellites and drones.

  • Connected Farms chief executive officer, Tom Andrews will talk about connectivity, data access and data management options for remote locations – what’s available now and what’s on the horizon.
  • ARMonline tools to assist with cropping decisions will be demonstrated by the University of Southern Queensland.

Latest FAW threshold research with Dr Joe Eyre (CSIRO) and Dr Melina Miles (Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries) will discuss FAW threshold research for sorghum and maize and management guidance for the 2024/25 season.

Seasonal update on cereal rust and disease management with Dr Steven Simpfendorfer (New south Wales Department of Primary Industries).

Early Birds focus on residuals – the ‘early risers’ session allows participants to engage in a panel discussion focusing on paddock selection for summer crops in the face of fallow residuals and glyphosate resistant weeds. Share your experience and learn from researchers and agronomists from around the region.

Concurrent sessions include:

  • Nutrition – impacts of management decisions, fertiliser choices and long-term cropping on soil health, soil carbon, nitrogen (N) banking and N risk.
  • Time for a Pea? – the fit for pigeon peas as a rotation crop in the north, the latest in chickpea research, and pest management strategies for pigeon pea crops.
  • Weeds – managing weeds in cotton and grains systems – optimising residuals for efficacy and minimising crop impact. Also manipulating sorghum agronomy to supress summer grass weeds, and farming systems implications for weed management.
  • Optimising grain sorghum in western areas – matching crops to conditions, modelling performance in the west, and addressing the yield gap.
  • Mungbeans – management decisions and tools to mitigate risk, disease management and increasing crop reliability.
  • Crop Protection – using plant growth regulators in northern barley, forecasting and managing Rutherglen bug, tolerances in wheat and mungbeans to root-lesion nematode, and implications of reduced sensitivity to DMI fungicides in barley net blotch.

The full list of update events includes:

  • Talwood – Tuesday 23 July 2024: Talwood Community Hall
  • Walgett – Wednesday 24 July 2024: Walgett Sporting Club
  • Goondiwindi (Two-days) – Tuesday 30 and Wednesday 31 July 2024: Goondiwindi Community Centre
  • Pittsworth – Thursday 1 August 2024: Pittsworth Function Centre
  • Jandowae – Friday 2 August 2024: Jandowae Memorial Hall
  • Osborne – Tuesday 13 August 2024: Osborne Football Club
  • Grenfell – Wednesday 14 August 2024: Grenfell Bowling Club
  • Trangie – Thursday 15 August 2024: Trangie Agricultural Research Centre.

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