An 18ha pasture paddock at Field, near Coonalpyn SA, was selected to demonstrate strategies to overcome sandy soil constraints. The paddock has deep sandy soils with very low nutrient fertility and a severely water repellent surface.

In autumn 2022, nine treatments were applied to plots 1.6 ha in size to supply nutrients in both an organic (compost) and mineral form (fertilisers), in combination with deep tillage to dilute surface repellent layers and loosen the subsoil.

First year results showed 10-30% increases in barley dry matter production with the combination of deep tillage and fertiliser application. Second year monitoring will continue in 2023.