The Liebe Group has established a dedicated 63 hectare Long Term Research Site, 27 kilometres west of Buntine on the Buntine-Marchagee Road. The site is available to researchers and other collaborators to carry out long term farming systems research and is well serviced with data sets available on soil profiling and ongoing weather station readings.
The Soil Biology Trial
The Soil Biology Trial was the driver for the establishment of the trial site. The site was selected as it had no significant chemical or physical soil constraint. However, it was deep ripped to 450mm to ensure there was no residual traffic compaction before being sown to lupins in 2003.
The Soil Biology trial aims to investigate the potential of biological and organic matter inputs to increase soil water storage, yield and overall soil health. The trial which commenced in 2003 is in a Wheat, Wheat, Lupin rotation and compares management techniques such as brown manuring, organic matter build up, burning and tillage to a district standard of minimum tillage with stubble retention.
Other Trials on the Long Term Research Site
|Title||Description||Lead Research Organisation|
|Soil Biology Trial||Ongoing trial which commenced in 2003 looking at how adding organic matter to the soils effects biology, crop nutrition and yield.||Liebe Group|
|Measuring nitrous oxide emissions||Measuring effect of soil carbon on nitrous oxide emissions. This trial utilises the soil biology trial.||UWA|
|Nitrogen response on high carbon soils||This trial also utilises the soil biology trial to determine how adding organic matter to soil effect nitrogen use efficiency and yield.||UWA|
|Does applying nitrogen to the soil have a negative impact on soil carbon accumulation?||Testing a microbial stimulation product, Bioprime as well as the hypothesis that applying nitrogen to the soil’s has a negative impact on soil carbon accumulation.||Bioscience|
|Biochar; impacts on nitrogen supply to plants||This trial was set up in 2010 and explored what is the best method of applying biochar to the soil, banded or top dressed It also explores how biochar impacts the availability of nitrogen.||Liebe Group/UWA|
|Using compost and spading to compare a low vs. high input cropping system||This trial looks at the physical, chemical and biological aspects of a farming system. It compares low input vs. high input approach to find the most economical option. Set up in 2013 it will continue for the next 3 seasons.||Liebe Group/ DAFWA|
|Understanding Biological Farming Inputs||This trial was set up in 2014 and looks at 22 biological amendments. This project will seek to evaluate biological amendments and aid farmers in developing methodologies to assess the efficacy of biological inputs in their own systems.||CSIRO|