Horticulture producers in the Rockhampton region have the opportunity to learn how to assess their soil from a soil chemistry ‘guru’, by attending the first in a series of workshops scheduled for the region.

Producers attending the first workshop at Lush Lychees in South Yaamba on Friday 31 July, can expect to get their hands dirty as they work with Hort360 Facilitator Michelle Haase and Agronomist David Hall to use simple in-field soil assessment activities easily applied on their own farm. Mr Hall will use a soil pit and practical hands-on activities to assist producers in learning how to determine their soil type, its water holding capacity, pH and other factors.

“Understanding your soil is crucial to get the best production out of your crops,” Ms Haase said.

Also at the workshop will be a demonstration in using Hort360 and a presentation on mapping technologies and tools that can be applied in-field to assist producers in getting a bird’s eye view of their farm and processes that are impacting production.

Hort360 is a best management practice program designed for the horticulture industry, and an online tool which helps producers benchmark their farming and business practices.

“It’s an important tool and we’ve now launched the Hort360 Reef Certification program so that growers in Great Barrier Reef Catchments can become accredited for gaining business efficiencies, and demonstrating sustainability and environmental stewardship,” said Hort360 Manager, Scott Wallace.

The workshop series is an initiative of Growcom, the peak industry body for horticulture in Queensland, and funded through the Queensland Government Reef Water Quality Program.

Registration is essential, as there will be some special provisions in place to accommodate social distancing and hygiene requirements due to COVID-19.

To register for the Understanding Soils Workshop on Friday 31 July at South Yaamba visit https://bit.ly/SthYaamba or contact Hort360 BMP Facilitator Michelle Haase by phone 0428 586 890 or email mhaase@growcom.com.au