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Frost damage to braocacre crops is a significant annual production constraint for localised parts of the Western Australian wheatbelt.
Wheat is highly susceptible to frost damage between ear emergence and flowering – often termed reproductive frost.
Frost occurs on clear nights in early spring when the air temperature drops to 2°C or less.
One-off deep cultivation can reduce the severity of soil water repellence.
One-off soil inversion results in the complete burial of the water repellent topsoil in a layer typically at a depth of 15 to 35 cm, and brings to the surface a layer of wettable subsoil.
One method of weed control is to remove weed seeds in the fallow, stubble and pre-sowing phase.
Confident identification of soil compaction to restrict crop or pasture growth uses diagnosis combining visual symptoms of plant, root and soil features.
Soil wetting agents reduce the effects of repellence by lowering the surface tension of the water which improves infiltration.
Furrow sowing forms micro-relief, small ridges and furrows, into which water can be harvested.
Water repellence develops when there is an accumulation of hydrophobic organic substances in a susceptible soil. Hydrophobic compounds are derived from plant and microbial sources.