Managing soils during and after drought in cropping systems

Resource Created By: Soils CRC

Resource Developed in 2022

Except from the Soil CRC

Drought can damage soils, reducing yield after the drought breaks. The deterioration in soil condition can have wider economic, social and environmental effects on entire communities. Practices that protect the soil, reduce the impact of erosion or assist recovery to regain the productive capacity of soil, help to manage the effects of drought. Under most climate change scenarios, droughts will become more common in many cropping areas of Australia.

The impact of drought on soils and on productivity and profitability can be mitigated through careful management of soils during drought,  immediately following drought and in between droughts by developing more resilient soils. This fact sheet summarises the key messages for farmers for managing soils during and after drought in cropping systems. They should be refined locally for best application.

During Drought

  • Reduce wind erosion risk by removing stock early and maintaining ground cover levels. Avoid grazing failed crops to maintain as much ground cover as possible.
  • Retain stubbles, avoid ripping and tilling, direct drill seed.
  • Target investment to protect most reliable paddocks.

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This project is jointly funded through Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund and Stirlings to Coast Farmers.

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