Following on from a successful series of soils workshops in July, peak industry body for Queensland horticulture, Growcom, is running a two-day Soils and Nutrition Masterclass for fruit, vegetable, nut and herb producers in the Burnett-Mary and Fitzroy regions. 

Experienced agronomist and soil chemistry expert, David Hall will deliver the Masterclass series and demonstrate practical, hands-on activities to assist producers in understanding soil type, water holding capacity, pH and other factors. Mr Hall presented at the Understanding Soils workshops, fielding many  questions from participating growers.

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

The two-day masterclasses will cover a range of soil topics for horticulture growers to improve soil health and plant production. Issues such as biology, water-plant-soil relationships, soil structure, sources of nutrition and the pros or cons of different fertiliser application types, soil carbon, soil borne diseases, and practical in-field tests will be canvassed thoroughly with plenty of opportunity for questions and discussion. 

Growcom Hort360 Facilitator and masterclass coordinator Michelle Haase said there was overwhelming interest from growers who attended the first soils workshop.

“Growers attending the Understanding Soils workshops were very interested in an intensive two-day masterclass event; the number of registrations already is a reflection of industry interest in this topic,” Ms Haase said.

“We’re excited to have the support of the Burnett Mary Regional Group, the Fitzroy Basin Association and E.E. Muir & Sons to be able to run this event to deliver content which will be of significant use to growers.”

Also, at the workshop will be a demonstration in using Hort360 to assist producers in getting a bird’s eye view of their farm and practices to identify inefficiencies. Hort360 is the best management practice program designed for the horticulture industry, and an online tool which helps producers benchmark their farming and business practices. 

“It is an important tool. We’ve recently 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,” Ms Haase said.

Masterclasses are a full two-day commitment from 8.30am to 4pm, and registration is essential, due to COVID-19. Details for the masterclasses are;

  • Mundubbera – 22-23 October
  • Yeppoon – 29-30 October
  • Gympie – 12-13 November

For further information or to register go to Growcom’s Event Calendar

The Soil and Nutrition Masterclass series is an initiative of Growcom’s Hort360 Great Barrier Reef project which is funded through the Queensland Government’s Reef Water Quality Program, and supported by Australian and Queensland Government programs of the Burnett Mary Regional Group and Fitzroy Basin Association.