Best practice in horticulture and grains production

Queensland horticulture and grain growers are continuing to adopt many farming practices that reduce soil, nutrient and pesticide run-off in the Reef catchments.

Use our industry-specific information and links below to keep informed about the latest research and farming methods in best horticulture and grain management practices.

Crops grown in the Reef catchments include mango, pineapple, avocado, citrus and cocoa. Field crops grown include mungbean, cotton, sunflower, soybean, maize, wheat, barley, chickpea and sorghum.

For properties in the Reef catchments reducing soil, nutrient and pesticide run-off is a key focus.

Our extension officers connect growers to industry specialists and share information about the latest research and AgTech.

Sustainable land management

You can increase farm efficiency and minimise the flow of nutrients, sediments and chemicals into waterways using improved land management practices. Reducing nutrient and sediment run-off is important for productivity.

A study in the Fitzroy region compared run-off and sediment yield between single-spaced and triple-spaced contour banks. Contour banks are designed to reduce erosion from the area between the banks. Key findings included:

  • single-spaced contour banks (narrower-spaced bays) generated 31% less sediment than triple-spaced contour banks (wider spaced bays) over a 9-year period
  • a combination of low ground cover and long slopes can lead to bank failure and high sediment losses.

A project in the Burnett Mary region measured different soil and nitrogen management practices during capsicum production and the impact on water quality.

Hort360 program for best practice management

Hort360 is the best management practice program for the horticulture industry.

Completing Hort360 will give you an understanding of how your farming practices align to industry best management practices.

The voluntary program helps to:

  • ensure effective farm inputs
  • avoid unnecessary farm expenses
  • reduce environmental impacts
  • identify business opportunities.

Developed and delivered by Growcom, the program provides technical support, on-farm training and access to professional networks.

Hort360 Reef Certification

Hort360 Reef Certification program provides a voluntary certification pathway for you to meet industry best practice in the Reef catchments.

Watch video testimonials from farmers getting great results from the program, which is funded through the Queensland Government’s Queensland Reef Water Quality Program and delivered by Growcom.

Growing pineapple and macadamia

The Pineapple Best Practice Manual is available online to members of Pineapple Australia.

To obtain a copy of the manual and the Pineapple problem solver field guide, phone 13 25 23.

Watch this video about improving the environmental management and sustainability of the Queensland pineapple industry.

Find out about managing pineapple farms during wet weather (PDF, 184KB).

Learn more about Queensland's pineapple industry.

We produce annual macadamia industry reports with benchmark findings including yield, quality and cost trends by season, region, farm size and tree age.

We have also created a whole-farm budgeting tool for macadamia production in northern Queensland.

The macadamia industry supports the Reef certification program. Growers in the Reef catchments are working to achieve Hort360 Reef Certification, contributing to improving the Reef water quality.

A trial in the Mary Burnett region found band spraying weeds in macadamias can reduce herbicide use by 50% and deliver large savings while still controlling weeds.

The Australian Macadamia Society is also developing toolkits for growers to provide best practice information on a range of farm management topics.

Case study: Research into mungbean mildew solves 60-year mystery for growers

Read about new research that has revealed the source of mungbean mildew, which is helping develop strategies to better control the disease.

Videos for horticulture and grains production

Watch these videos to find out about innovation in your industry.