Dryland Pastures

Southern farm visits Jan 2021

Professor Moot recently took the opportunity to show his overseas visitors some of the farming practices in New Zealand. The visit to a Northern Southland hill country farm discussed the importance of lime for clover production on hill country. The cost of flying on lime can appear prohibitive as the clover response may take 2-3…

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Ode to 2020

19 December 2020 Posted on behalf of Prof Derrick Moot   An ode to 2020, a year that delivered plenty, after Wuhan gave birth to a brand new disease Add famine, conquest and war, we’ve done this all before, there are four horseman to appease The apocalypse began, with no collective plan, and no international…

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Agroecology inappropriate in Africa

Prof Moot was recently sent the link below by a former CEO of Plant and Food Research Ltd. It summarises the pitfalls of “agroecology” which has recently repackaged as “Regenerative Agriculture.” The article, written by David Zaruk a professor at Odisee University College posting as the “Risk-Monger”, suggests science will win in the end because it…

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Lucerne – bending the rules at lambing

Rule 1:  Never set stock on lucerne Rule 2: If you want to set stock on lucerne – read Rule 1. Rule 3: If you have a large area of lucerne (more than 15% of your farm) and are running out of lambing area you may need to set stock for a short period (up…

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Autumn at Bonavaree – Challenges and opportunities under lock down

It was great to have some rain last week – it allowed Fraser Avery some time to write about his planning for lucerne and sub clover after the first autumn rains – and to reflect on missing the opportunity to host us all at Bonavaree last week. On the farm Yes it is raining! When…

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Sub clover emerges in Taihape

After my last blog post Andrew Peters from Taihape responded with his experience of increasing sub clover on farm. About 20 years ago he started putting “some” sub clover in with his fertiliser. I asked Andrew what that meant? “The loader driver was given a rat bait container and told to put one in each…

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Agriculture and Science – Essential in a crisis

The recent rain across the country may cause pastures to green up. Stay off them if you want to have feed in spring. At this time of year it is important to get a canopy of green leaves covering the ground extensively before winter temperatures cause growth rates to slow. For dryland farmers the rain…

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Overseer fails as regulatory tool

In his report on Overseer the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment has indicated that in its current state it does not meet the standards required of a regulatory tool (access the report here). He has recently followed this up with comments about the lack of activity by the current Government to address the issues raised….

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Horehound BioControl Update 12

Greetings everyone, It has been just over a year now since we first released the horehound moths, so it must be a good time to assess where they are at. Plume moth – no big news yet This one was supposed to be the easy one, remember?… We released caterpillars of this leaf-feeding moth at…

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