– It’s like putting a plant in a freezer all night and trying to thaw it out the next day and see if it will keep growing (Ice Age Now, Sep 6, 2014):
Growers writing-off wheat and canola crops in New South Wales.
Grain growers in the central and western plains of New South Wales are finding widespread damage to their wheat crops after a dozen severe winter frosts.
Some farmers say up to 80 per cent of their wheat crop could be a write-off.
Jock Coupland, has 3000 acres of wheat and 1500 of canola and grows irrigated cotton on the banks of the Lachlan River, 40 kilometres west of Condobolin.
Standing in a field of wheat, he says “I am thinking that the damage level is probably 50 per cent of the crop,” he says.
Condobolin farmer Roger Todd says “I’m guessing half our wheat, by the looks of things, is almost fully wiped out.
“I mean minus five, minus six and all night, frozen for ten or twelve hours, it’s like putting a plant in a freezer all night and trying to thaw it out the next day and see if it will keep growing.
Mr Todd says that canola crops in the region were also hit hard.
Further east, the frost damage isn’t as widespread, but one grain grower just north of Parkes, has a faba bean crop that’s been hit hard, with faba beans halved in size.
‘We had a crop of faba beans that were about 60 centimetres and were just starting to flower, they had minus four on them, the next day they were 30 centimetres high.
Rohan Brill, research agronomist from DPI says “Frosts have hit grain growers in the central and western plains areas of New South Wales hard….the western Riverina and Riverina districts have also been hit hard as well”.
“Some crops may have suffered frost damage of up to 80 per cent,” he said.