NRM top tips - February: restore, regenerate, revegetate

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.

The Grants have always been innovators and are early adopters of best management practices. They have been participants in the Australian cotton industry’s myBMP program for several years, achieving myBMP certification in 2016 and for the past two years have been participants of the Better Cotton Initiative.  

More recently the Grants have been looking at restoring 150ha of riparian grasslands and woodlands along Jimbour creek on their property 'Wyalong' which they have recently purchased.

"Jimbour Creek runs east to west, connecting the eastern Bunya Mountain foothills with the Condamine River," said Jamie (pictured). 

"This provides an important corridor for fauna movement across the plains and an important habitat for local fauna including natural predators which are contributing towards our IPM. The IPM benefits we receive from Jimbour Creek corridor are evident in that we have been able to pick our refuge crops adjacent to the creek unlike surrounding fields further away." 

The Grants initial restoration management actions have been to undertake invasive animal control.

"As a response to increasing feral pig numbers we are implementing an area wide feral pig management plan and have recently participated in an aerial shoot," Jamie said. "Our next step is to clean-up the weeds along the creek to increase native groundcover, while reducing erosion and habitats for pest insects. We are hoping research soon to be undertaken along the creek by a CRDC-supported project with Griffith University will provide some insight into what plants exist in our seedbank and how we can tweek our management practices to encourage natural regeneration of native grasses and trees." 

Jamie and Susie believe implementing and continually improving best practice - whether it be pesticide management, good work health and safety practices or riparian restoration - is essential for the sustainability of their farms and business.

"The restoration of Jimbour Creek is a long-term project for us and we don’t expect changes overnight but with the support of industry groups such as CottonInfo and best management practice frameworks like myBMP we are confident this can be achieved," Jamie said. 

This blog is part of a year long program from CottonInfo, with the themes aligned with the 2019 CottonInfo cotton calendar. For more information, view the calendar, or contact the CottonInfo Technical Lead for Natural Resources, Stacey Vogel