By Stephen Balcombe and Samantha Capon, Griffith University (supported by CRDC). Pictured: Peter Norrie & Dr Stephen Balcombe.
For cotton farms with streams and riverine areas, healthy functioning riparian zones represent significant areas of high biodiversity and play a large role in the provision of ecosystem services. Such services include natural pest control (beneficials), prevention of soil erosion, water filtration, shade provision, shelter and barrier effects, pollination and aesthetic human benefits.
SLW have become more numerous in most regions during February and many crops have been treated with pyriproxifen during the 30 day resistance management window. Now that cotton is opening and crops are moving towards defoliation, it is vital to continue to keep a close eye on populations to avoid a sticky situation.
Since European settlement many plants and animals have been introduced to Australia, many of which have spread and multiplied becoming significant agricultural and environmental problems.
It's estimated that invasive species cost Australia billions of dollars annually in reduced agricultural outputs, and management, administrative and research costs. Invasive species are damaging and decimating native ecosystems and wildlife across Australia through predation, habitat destruction, disease and competition for resources such as food and shelter.
For the month of February, the top NRM tip is: restore, regenerate, and revegetate.
A cotton growers perspective - Jamie Grant
Jamie and Susie Grant own and manage over 2000 hectares across two farms, 'Kielli' and 'Wyalong', located on the Jimbour Brigalow Flood Plains near Dalby in southern Qld.
For the month of January, the top NRM tip is: think beyond the crop, consider your surrounding natural areas.
To improve the abundance and diversity of natural predators and pollinators (like the European honey bee), consider native vegetation as part of your cropping system. Research shows that native vegetation along field edges can increase pest control in the field, and if pressure is still high, pollination can reduce the yield loss.
QDAF's Dr Paul Grundy talks first irrigation in a water challenged season for Central QLD growers:
Considering planting dryland cotton this season? In this article, QLD DAF's Paul Grundy talks about the environmental factors that impact cotton establishment in dryland cotton.
When you break it down, seedling establishment is dependent on two things:
Mike Bange, Senior Principal Research Scientist, CSIRO and James Quinn, Marketing & Extension Lead, CSD are often asked questions regarding limited water decisions. Here are their answers to commonly asked questions:
Which configurations yield highest?
Fully irrigated solid planted cotton will out-yield wider row configurations on a per hectare basis NOT necessarily on a per ML basis. (Figure 1).