Fruit and vegetable crop recovery after wet weather and floods

If your crops and cropping land have been affected by floods, it is essential that you take steps as soon as possible to manage crop recovery and minimise the extent of the damage.

Waterlogged soils are low in oxygen, as the oxygen between soil particles is replaced by water. Oxygen is essential for healthy root growth and the lack of oxygen in soils over time results in root and eventually plant death.

Ways to improve drainage

After significant rain or flooding, inspect the crops as soon as it is safe to do so and mark the areas (e.g. with coloured pegs) that are affected by poor drainage. If possible, take immediate steps to improve the drainage of these areas so that the water can get away (e.g. by digging drains).

In the longer term, look for ways to improve the drainage of the affected areas. Options might include:

  • re-shaping the layout of the field
  • improving surface drainage
  • installing subsurface drainage.

If the drainage can't be improved, consider using the area for some other purpose, such as for a silt trap.

Wet weather can also increase the likelihood of agricultural diseases. Learn more about fusarium wilt in cotton and fusarium stalk rot in sorghum.

Plant disease diagnosis

It's important to identify and target diseases in horticultural crops affected by recent floods and wet weather. Grow Help Australia can test your horticultural crops for diseases and pests.

Restoring trees after cyclone damage

Cyclones can injure or damage fruit or nut trees. Learn how to restore cyclone-damaged fruit and nut trees.

Fact sheets

The following fact sheets provide information on managing specific crops during wet weather and floods: