Farmers shout out for composting information

 This compost pile was the star attraction for more than 100 farmers and agricultural industry members, who flocked to Craig Mathews’ Bass Coast dairy  farm to find out more about on-farm composting.

Composting spoiled hay might not be up there with the London Olympics in terms of big events but over the past year people have been turning out in droves to field days at places where you don’t usually find a crowd.

Held at Bridgewater, Pyramid Hill, Terang, Macarthur (near Hamilton) and Glen Alvie (near Wonthaggi), the field days attracted more than 400 people from across the state, with a handful of people making the trip from north and west of the border.

Department of Primary Industries (DPI) Productive Soils Specialist Declan McDonald said the field days were popular because at the time tens of thousands of hay bales had been spoiled in the 2010-11 Victorian floods.

Finding out more about on-farm composting.

 “We wanted to help producers recoup some of their investment so we looked at using hay bales to fill old gullies, spreading hay over the surface of  paddocks and allowing pasture to grow through, and composting the spoiled hay but the demand for the field days still exceeded my expectations,” Mr  McDonald said.

 “Of these options, composting had the greatest potential to return benefits to the farm so this became the focus of the field days and a step-by-step guide  which we have just released.”

 DPI Senior Research Scientist Kevin Wilkinson said he was aware of about 50 dairy farmers in South West Victoria who were on-farm composting and  using the compost on their pastures to complement their traditional nutrient management program.

“Anecdotal evidence suggests these farmers are managing to maintain productivity by using less inorganic fertiliser but it’s important for us to scientifically validate this,” he said. 


"composting had the greatest potential to return benefits to the farm"

 “While the field days were a great way to get science out into a paddock and show people the opportunities and limitations of using on-farm composting,  people have been asking what’s next.

 “Having just received a grant through the federal government’s Action on the Ground program we are joining forces with Monash University to trial and  demonstrate on-farm composting practices in South West Victoria using dairy effluent and manure.

 “In time, we hope our work will create a reliable source of evidence based information that dairy farmers can use to make informed decisions about how to  increase carbon in their soils and reduce fertiliser inputs on their farms.”

News Category

New Forum Topics

Topic Replies Last post Forum
5765 Warts on my calf
by bek007 on Wed, 07/17/2019 - 19:01
0
by bek007
Wed, 07/17/2019 - 19:01
Animal Health
5764 Mulcher vs Slasher
by steventh on Fri, 07/12/2019 - 00:39
6
by Albertgotdonkey
Mon, 07/15/2019 - 08:31
Farm equipment
932 Tractors
by gaz on Fri, 07/13/2012 - 13:53
9
by stevo83
Sun, 07/14/2019 - 19:17
General Forum
5759 3 Point Linkage small Backhoe attachment
by [email protected] on Sat, 07/06/2019 - 10:05
1
by steventh
Sat, 07/13/2019 - 19:36
General Forum
5757 Nigerian Dwarf Goats
by gem7680 on Wed, 07/03/2019 - 17:28
2
by admin
Wed, 07/10/2019 - 09:18
Goats
5760 green eye crust on lamb
by leahj86 on Tue, 07/09/2019 - 23:08
0
by leahj86
Tue, 07/09/2019 - 23:08
Sheep
5733 serrated tussock
by Robdog on Sun, 06/09/2019 - 13:33
3
by Bohdan
Tue, 07/09/2019 - 10:38
Weeds & pests
5673 Goat Worming
by Brettgarland on Sat, 05/11/2019 - 17:06
5
by barb
Sun, 07/07/2019 - 08:55
Farming Help
5742 Chainsaw
by alweller on Fri, 06/28/2019 - 15:21
1
by Brownscows
Sun, 07/07/2019 - 08:25
Discussion groups
3059 Tractor implements... Advice please.
by Mal on Sat, 09/10/2016 - 11:08
2
by [email protected]
Sat, 07/06/2019 - 10:14
Farming Help
5758 Starting a self sufficient/permy/homestead/hobby farm!
by gem7680 on Fri, 07/05/2019 - 13:22
0
by gem7680
Fri, 07/05/2019 - 13:22
New Members
5503 Agistment gone bad!
by frontess on Mon, 04/01/2019 - 21:35
7
by andrewLeL
Tue, 07/02/2019 - 07:19
General Forum
5738 Hello! 50 Acres on the South Coast NSW
by Lilly on Sun, 06/23/2019 - 16:00
1
by Scott Wells
Sun, 06/30/2019 - 20:28
New Members
5735 Ration Feeding Beef Cattle
by Urchy87 on Tue, 06/18/2019 - 19:28
3
by admin
Tue, 06/25/2019 - 12:36
General Forum
5736 New Member - Northern Rivers NSW
by ashcow on Thu, 06/20/2019 - 14:15
1
by admin
Sun, 06/23/2019 - 15:32
New Members
5734 Just bought our first block of land, hello!
by too-many-boys-and-me on Mon, 06/17/2019 - 15:20
1
by admin
Thu, 06/20/2019 - 14:25
New Members
2999 Dexter Cattle or Small Breed/Miniature Cattle Breeders in CQ
by landk2016 on Wed, 07/20/2016 - 08:25
5
by admin
Wed, 06/19/2019 - 22:39
General Forum
5522 Total newbies on 8 acres Vic
by shelle on Thu, 04/11/2019 - 10:56
4
by Albertgotdonkey
Thu, 06/13/2019 - 12:08
New Members
2644 Cattle branding - fire v electric
by Comraich on Mon, 11/02/2015 - 14:33
7
by sallyero62
Tue, 06/11/2019 - 15:13
Farming Help
3316 Atherton Tablelands Queensland
by Benfairley on Mon, 01/22/2018 - 17:08
3
by sallyero62
Tue, 06/11/2019 - 15:05
New Members

Our Sponsors

Our Partners