Expressions of interest are now open for the latest round of the Geographe catchment soil testing program.
With global fertiliser prices estimated to have increased by 180 per cent, the program is even more important this year for farmers hoping to make potential savings.
GeoCatch Project Officer Jenelle Schult says the program provides farmers with whole farm soil testing, colour-coded nutrient maps, soil and plant nutrition workshops, spring plant tissue testing and access to one-on-one Fertcare Accredited agronomic advice.
“Farmers are offered two soil sampling approaches: do-it-yourself or sampled for you” said Jenelle.
The two options allow the program to be tailored to meet the needs of the farmer. The do-it-yourself sampling is an opportunity for farmers to get hands-on and lead the sampling process with their local knowledge.
The program is open to beef, dairy and sheep grazing enterprises in the Geographe catchment with over 40ha of cleared land and is being offered by GeoCatch in part in partnership with Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development and Department of Water and Environmental Regulation.
Jenelle says the soil testing program is a win for farmers and the environment. “Being part of the program helps farmers save money on fertiliser, improves farm productivity and reduces nutrients entering Geographe Bay”.
“Many farmers have been surprised to find they have adequate phosphorus levels across much of their farm and can divert their attention and dollars, to addressing other nutrients limiting production,” said Jenelle.
Modelling estimates a reduction of up to 4.8 tonnes a year of phosphorus entering Geographe Bay since 2009 as result of improved their fertiliser management practices from the program.
Applications for the soil testing program are open until Sunday 19 June 2022. For more information or to register your interest, visit https://estuaries.dwer.wa.gov.au/strategies/sustainable-agriculture/soil-testing/
This project is part of Royalties for Region’s Healthy Estuaries WA and Revitalising Geographe Waterways programs. These State Government initiatives aim to support the long-term health of our south-west estuaries.