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The management of crops following wheat tend to be the least profitable in the cropping rotation. Work was undertaken to investigate options for improving the profitability of these crops (including wheat on wheat).
More generally, previous work has highlighted considerable spatial variation in paddock conditions. Work has been undertaken to confirm that it is better to treat paddocks according to this variation as opposed to applying general paddock rates of inputs and to produce advice on the best technologies and strategies to use when undertaking a more site-specific approach to input allocation.
This project investigated the case for variable rate and also investigated management options for crops grown on wheat stubbles. Considerable ground truthing including soil testing, crop monitoring and soil moisture monitoring was undertaken to confirm real differences between delineated zones.
The key findings of this project were that:
Conditions in paddocks driving underlying fertility and yield potential vary considerably and inputs should be applied according to the needs of individual zones as opposed to general paddock applications. EM surveys, elevation maps and yield maps are all important when zoning paddocks. Once boundaries are drawn, zones should be ground truthed and input rates can then be determined through soil test results and/or previous nutrient removal based on yield maps.
Following the first wheat crop in a rotation, profits will be maximized by:
Results can be found in “Making Money out of Precision Agriculture, results from the Riverine Plains Inc project “ Improving Winter Cropping Systems in the Riverine Plains, 2009”.
Results from the 3rd Crop Program, a report from the Riverine Plains Inc project “Improving Winter Cropping Systems in the Riverine Plains, 2009”
The 3rd crop final report (include link), includes:
The project also produced a draft protocol for high yield and high profit triticale (2007) , as well as a draft protocol for high yield and high profit barley (2007).