Co-op farmer sowing early this year

Mandy and Richard Walker have sown their hemp crop early this season - taking lessons from last season and hoping to see how it will grow over winter.

Hemp Co-op Farmer Sowing Early This Season.
 
Mandy and Richard Walker in Bolgart has sown their hemp seed early this year to see how it is going to grow over the winter season.
 
They had a great germination last year but the dry finish to winter meant there was little long lasting soil moisture which resulted in little seed development.  The crop was also hit with budworms during flowering.
 
This year to plan is to see how their French seed variety Ferimon 12, will develop with more moisture over winter and finish better towards October, filling out the seed heads with the final spring rains.
 
“We went in with the rain this year.  Have used inputs this time – weed control through disc plough and fertilizer to help it along and planning on spraying for budworm because the surrounding crops are canola.  Also have two small paddocks with no weed control so will see if the hemp can outcompete it. 
 
Aiming for an early October harvest, we would have warmed up a little by then and would expect the rains to have finished in September” 
 
Being north of Perth allows them those somewhat warmer days than most farmers in the South West and the Great Southern.
 
The Co-op also has Daniel Gardener in Moora, sowing in a number of varieties in July to see how they will develop on the final winter rains of the region.
 
It is wonderful to see these Co-op hemp farmers trialling growing industrial hemp in their regions and sharing results with the Co-op members for all of us to learn how to grow better hemp.
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Published Jul 23, 2020

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