ALL THINGS weather will be under the microscope at the Birchip Cropping Group (BCG) main field day, to be held on September 13 at Curyo, between Birchip and Woomelang.
Topics for discussion will include how to maximise early breaks with opportunistic early sowing of wheat, identification of frost damage and managing frost events, along with the all-important spring seasonal outlook.
To present what the spring outlook holds for farmers in the Wimmera and Mallee is Agriculture Victoria’s seasonal risk agronomist Dale Grey.
Mr Grey will be bringing to the stage a live version of the Very Fast Break YouTube series which has attracted a cult following.
With large parts of Western Australia and central NSW experiencing some very dry conditions this season, the Wimmera and Mallee have been relatively fortunate, and Mr Grey will explain the climate drivers that have led to the current situation.
So far the trial site at Curyo, located on the corner of the Sunraysia Highway and Grogan’s Road, has had growing season rainfall of 185mm, which is above average.
While the exceptionally dry June did cause some concern, the summer and early rain meant soil moisture levels were sufficient over large parts of western Victoria.
On August 21, Agriculture Victoria’s soil moisture probes were still showing higher levels than this time in 2016 at Werrimull, Speed, Ouyen and Normanville.
While both the Pacific and Indian Oceans have not made any great moves towards El Niño or positive IOD respectively, models are still predicting a dry to average outcome for the rest of the year.
2017 has been marked by the influence of the Sub-Tropical Ridge and the Southern Annular Mode, two lesser known and understood climate drivers.
Mr Grey will explain their influence on this season and how this compares to past seasons.
Other topics to be discussed on the day include emerging weeds and their management, a farmer-built shielded sprayer, alternative capital funding for farm businesses, the economics of controlled traffic farming and fire prevention and management during harvest and much more.
The 2017 BCG Main Field Day will be held on the Sunraysia Highway (corner Grogans Road) at Curyo on September 13 from 9am.
Entry is free for BCG members and $50 for non-members.
For more details contact BCG on (03) 5492 2787 or visit www.bcg.org.au/events.