Small landholder seasonal activity list

Page last updated: Wednesday, 13 December 2017 - 1:32pm

Please note: This content may be out of date and is currently under review.


Keep on top of the following issues during May to ensure your property is well prepared for the coming months:

Topics Issues to consider


  • Cattle born on your property need a white NLIS tag before leaving for the saleyards, as well as a brand or earmark and a waybill. Be organised and avoid having animals returned. For help, call the Brands Office on +61 (0)8 9780 6207.
  • Lactating ewes – for at least the first 5 weeks – have higher nutritional needs (approximately 2.5 times their nutritional needs when non-pregnant and non-lactating). Also, watch out for signs of mastitis: lameness, reddened or purplish udder, reluctance to let lamb feed, milk clotted, watery or blood-stained.

Crops and pasture

  • If you are going to be sowing new pastures or crops make sure that you have achieved good weed and insect control before you plant.
  • Keep a very close eye on newly germinating pastures and crops and be prepared to control insects (like Red Legged Earth Mite, (RLEM)) or they can destroy the tiny new seedlings.

Fresh produce

  • Prepare your veggie patch for next season’s plants by replacing nutrients. A good quality manure should be incorporated into the soil.
  • Plant broad beans and strawberries.
  • Pick last crops of pumpkins and sweet potatoes and store undercover. If you cut pumpkin stem longer than 10cm they will store for longer. Also, pick last crops of capsicums, eggplants, tomatoes and zucchini.
  • Autumn is a key time for nutrient uptake for avocados as the root system is very strong and is preparing the tree for winter and the development of flowers for spring fruitset.

Land and infrastructure management

  • After first rains it is a good idea to check any drains around your property. By monitoring your drains regularly you can identify potential areas of erosion and remove any build-up of debris.
  • Now is also an ideal time to check any fencing that may need fixing or replacing. After rain it is often easier to erect new fences. If you are replacing an existing fence this is a great opportunity to realign or redesign.

Pests and weeds

  • All weed control will require several years of repeated effort to reduce the seed bank and several methods of control will be required. Relying only on herbicide to control weeds, especially if chemical groups are not rotated, can result in a build-up of herbicide resistance and this should be avoided at all costs.
  • Weeds that are common pasture pests in winter include Variegated thistle, Paterson’s curse and Cape Tulip, for further advice on how to control these weeds search our website.
  • Now is an important period in the fight against Mediterranean fruit fly (Medfly), reducing numbers now by continuing baiting/trapping programs and cleaning up any unwanted fruit will reduce the numbers of flies carrying over into spring. Remember that cleaning up any unwanted fruit not only benefits the reduction of Medfly numbers but also aids in reducing fungal problems such as brown rot and apple scab.
  • Autumn is the time for phosphite injection/sprays for the control/prevention of Phytophthora cinnamomi in avocado trees.
  • Continue with clean up sprays on stone fruit to help reduce carryover of a range of fungal, bacterial and mite issues.