14 October, 2015
Highlighting current practices which lead to high cotton years is a focus of the second year of the CSD Ambassador Network. In the coming cotton season the Network of growers is to be expanded to broaden the reach in irrigated situations and also including more dryland cotton crops as well.
After an initial successful implementation of the CSD Ambassador Network culminating in a conference of Ambassadors in Sydney in August.
“Fortunately, we saw one of the highest yielding cotton season on record as our introductory season which provided a great data set of where we want the cotton industry to consistently yield in line with our aims for the Network.” CSD Extension and Development Agronomist, James Quinn said.
“Some of the key things which came out of the first season of the CSD Ambassador Network were centred around practical things growers can do to improve the yield potential of their crops.”
“Again, we saw a significant variation in the establishment percentage achieved across the crops within the CSD Ambassador Network. We recorded variation in the field conditions planted into, establishment method and across the planter. Which we endeavour to look further into in the coming season to try and fully understand the impacts conditions at this time have on getting a healthy and uniformity cotton plant stands.”
“Many growers want to get conditions right and plant into conditions which will give the them the best start to the cotton crop but knowledge and understanding of what these conditions are. The Ambassador Network aim this season is to objectively quantify the all conditions surrounding the planting operation.” Mr Quinn continued.
“Soil compaction was a big issue which was top of mind for Many within the Ambassador Network and with the majority of the cotton within the Network being picked with heavier newer pickers the impacts of this is something the Ambassador Network growers want to quantify into the future.”
“A topic which had generated a lot of discussion was nitrogen fertiliser rates as growers wrestle with trying to apply enough to achieve high yield without over fertilising. Last season with the high yields the Ambassador Network growers in general got the application of fertiliser spot on to meet the crops requirements based on seed Nitrogen percentages collected at ginning.” Said Mr Quinn.
The CSD Extension and Development Team look forward to seeing how the Ambassador Network crops perform this season and to closely work with the cotton growers to highlight practices and crop statistics which will contribute to achieving the aim of improving the Australian industry average by 2b/ha.
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