2013 Report – Long Fallow Management Trial

Key points

  • Long fallows and green manure crops are valuable management tools that increase soil moisture and nutrition for the following crop.
  • Controlling weeds 100% of the time in fallows preserves maximum soil moisture. Spraying weeds late in this trial equated to lost income of $85.56/ha as a result of lower grain yield and quality.
  • Vetch as green manure compared equally in yield to a fully sprayed fallow. This was not the case with an oats cover crop. Grazing value of these crops would have been significant but was not accounted for.
  • Grain protein was highest in the full spray fallow treatment highlighting how weeds can impact the availability of soil nutrients.