Prizes to be awarded at BIGG Pasture Walk

The pasture paddocks in the Barossa Improved Grazing Group’s Pasture Challenge Project will be judged during an upcoming pasture walk on Friday, September 19.

The Challenge is funded by the Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources, to promote the sustainable improvement of pasture paddocks in the Barossa region. Five local producer groups (Angaston Ag Bureau, Koonunga Ag Bureau, Barossa Mid North Dairy Discussion Group, Mt Pleasant Beef Group and North Rhine Sheep Group) have been competing against each other to improve their pastures throughout the 2014 growing season.

BIGG technical facilitator Brett Nietschke says the pasture challenge has been a great success for the group.

“We’ve had some friendly competition between our members, with each producer group striving to improve their pasture, and the result is we’ve and been able to learn a great deal about different strategies for sustainable pasture improvement,” he said.

The pasture walk will be held on Friday, September 19, to visit each of the Pasture Challenge paddocks to showcase how they have been improved, starting at Ebenezer at 12.30pm and finishing at Flaxman Valley at 5pm. The walk will include a visit to BIGG’s MLA-funded trial site at Eden Valley, which is investigating the effect of root diseases on the productivity of sub-clover pasture.

“We’re lucky that we have so many great projects going on at the moment so that while we’re judging the pasture challenge we can also show producers where we’re at with our sub-clover root disease project, and talk about our soil moisture monitoring project and our new project looking at recovery of native pastures following the Eden Valley bushfire.

“As part of the Pasture Walk, consultant Tim Prance will judge each of the Barossa Pasture Challenge paddocks, and we’ll be awarding various prizes at the end of the day. The prizes have been kindly sponsored by Heritage Seeds, Nufarm, Farmer Johns and Coopers Farm Supplies and will include awards for the most productive pasture, the most improved pasture and the most profitable pasture”.