Winter cropping season shaping up to be better than anticipated

Don Kirkpatrick

Don Kirkpatrick

HEAVY falls last week and the promise of more on Thursday and Friday has re-written the script in terms of a winter crop in the Riverina.

There is still plenty of talk about drought and more rain will be needed to instill further confidence but most landholders in southern NSW are saying they will take whatever comes in the gauge.

Don Kirkpatrick of "Maxwell Park", Mangoplah said the script for winter couldn't have been written better.

"You have to put it into context and think of where we have come from," he said.

At his property 110mm has fallen over the past five weeks. This was enough to boost lucerne crops and pastures. However, he cautioned that there was still a way to go in terms of dams and on-farm stock water storage.

"To get rain at the end of March, a bit of a follow up mid April, then extremely good rain at the end of April, and now more forecast in the next day or two is good," he said.


  • Griffith 55mm
  • The Rock 40mm
  • East of Coolamon 37mm
  • Gregadoo/Big Springs 39mm

"This is as good a break as we could have hoped for," he said.

Despite the heavy falls he said most people would still be able to access paddocks to complete winter sowing.

"There is now real problems with access, the rain has generally been good soaking rain with some heavier storms," he said.

Although there had been some damage from run off he said that was a small trade off when compared to the harsh dry conditions earlier on.

"We will take all of the millimetres in the rain gauge," he said.

Meanwhile, coping with drought was still on the agenda this week and the CWA NSW State Conference in Albury urged both sides of government to consider assistance measures despite who wins the upcoming federal election on May 18.