My role in the department
I conduct research to develop new pasture legume cultivars and species and work on pasture agronomy. I work with growers to increase the sustainability of the medium and low rainfall mixed farming zone of southern Australia by developing new cost effective systems to establish pasture legumes and addressing key constraints such as weed management and soil fertility.
I contributed to the twin and summer sowing technologies which dramatically reduce the cost of pasture establishment, offer a reliable pasture establishment and provide a longer potential growing season.
For most of my professional career (20 years) I have studied the complexity of the southern Australian mediterranean farming systems and provided ways to improve its sustainability. I have been very active in sourcing and collecting annual pasture legumes and their root-nodule bacteria for potential roles in WA agriculture since 1993. This has included several collection missions in the Mediterranean Basin. I have been responsible for the domestication and selection of new species to world agriculture - biserrula, eastern star clover, bladder clover and Lotus ornithopodioides. Significant collaborations have also resulted in cultivars of serradella and gland clover. Surveys in 2004/05 showed that over 60% of new sowings incorporated these alternative pasture legumes.
- Pasture Agronomy within the Profitable Crop and Pasture Sequences Project (GRDC)
- National and International Pasture agronomy extension
- BS in Agriculture with Honours, University of Sassari - Italy
- PhD Plant Science – University of Western Australia