Taking steps to managing silt on saturated paddocks

How best to remedy and repair land impacted by silt deposits from the June floods will be the topic of a paddock walk at Yinnar on Wednesday 8 December.

Livestock Extension Officer John Bowman said the paddock walk will look at river flats that were flooded in June and the subsequent work the farmer has done to get the paddock back into production.

“Given the very wet spring we’ve had in Gippsland following the floods, the catchment is still saturated and a follow up flood is not out of the question if the wet conditions continue,” he said.

“There are a number of things to consider when repairing silt-affected paddocks including the amount and depth of silt on the paddock, and the type of material that has been deposited – sand, silt, rocks and debris.

“The type of species previously growing on the river flat, for example, kikuyu or ryegrass, will also impact on how quickly paddocks recover.

“How fast the flood water moves off the paddock or how free draining the soils will all determine the type of remedial action needed and how effective it is in achieving new pasture growth on a silt-affected paddock,” Mr Bowman said.

At the paddock walk, participants will be able to review photos of the site taken in July and hear about what the farmer has done to remedy the impact of silt deposits on his river flats.

Topics to be discussed at the paddock walk include:

  • Summer grazing management
  • Nutrient requirements for sowing
  • Summer weed management
  • Importance of soil tests.

Mr Bowman said over sowing, resting the paddock, spraying out weeds or adding fertiliser once it dries out or rotating quick on-off grazing are all possible remedial actions that could be undertaken.

The ‘Managing silt deposit’ paddock walk will be held at Yinnar on Wednesday 8 December between 10 am and 1.30 pm. Morning tea and a light lunch will be provided.

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