Rotate crops and pastures

Crop and pasture rotation is the recipe for diversity

Weeds love predictable rotations. They find it easy to evolve resistance to herbicides when they are used in a predictable manner. If we mix it up a bit, the weeds get confused and find it harder to adapt to the farming system.

As well as confusing the weeds, diverse crop and pasture systems increase the range of weed control options that we have up our sleeve. For example, a pasture phase includes grazing animals and the ability to spray top the pasture. And what is better than rotating to a break crop? Rotating to a double break crop. Two break crops in a row is a great way of smashing the weed seed bank, setting the paddock up for a long crop phase.

The key takeaways:

  • Use break crops and double break crops, fallow, and pasture phases to drive the weed seed bank down.
  • In summer cropping systems, use diverse rotations of crops including cereals, pulses, cotton, oilseed crops, millets and fallows.
  • Add greater diversity to weed management strategies by adopting herbicide tolerance traits.

Articles

View all
Case Study
Case Study

Slarke family, Lake Grace WA

The Slarke family implement an integrated weed management program to minimise the impact of herbicide resistance on their farming business. Read More...
Article
News

WeedSmart Big 6 on High rainfall farms in the Southern and Western regions

Get started with the WeedSmart Big 6 tailored for the high rainfall regions of Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia. Read More...
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News

WeedSmart Big 6 on WA’s Low and Mid rainfall farms

Get started with the WeedSmart Big 6 tailored for the low and mid rainfall regions of Western Australia. Read More...
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News

WeedSmart for organic croppers

The Jacksons developed valuable weed management tactics that can be employed in both conventional and organic farming systems. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Jackson family, Gurley NSW

The 1700 ha family operation is based on a robust winter cropping program featuring wheat, barley, chickpea, canola and linseed to help keep weed numbers low and manage risk. Read More...
Article
Ask an Expert

What are the economic benefits of diverse rotations?

Crop choice and rotation planning are very powerful weed control tactics, central to a biologically-robust and sustainable farming system. Read More...
Article
News

Never miss an opportunity to tackle weeds

One of the main benefits of using harvest weed seed control is that the Turners still have many newer herbicide products up their sleeve. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Rhys Daniels, Capella Qld

The Daniels run a predominantly summer-cropping program and have many tactics in place to keep their weed numbers down. Read More...
Article
News

Winter-planted sorghum and weedy oats

Research shows there are herbicide options available to manage weedy oats in sorghum planted in late winter. Read More...
Article
News

Tackle weeds and herbicide resistance with the Big 6

Nutrien agronomists from across the country share their tips to help control crop weeds using the WeedSmart Big 6 strategy. Read More...
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Ask an Expert

What is the value of fixed nitrogen for suppressing weeds?

Competition in crops after pulses is a major weed management benefit, and the direct weed control options in pulses have also improved. Read More...
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News

Plan your attack on the weed seed bank

Here we summarise the key components of the WeedSmart Big 6 strategies and the principles that underpin them. Read More...
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Ask an Expert

How can I make the most of spring planning sessions?

Spring planning sessions are vitally important for growers and agronomists to keep ahead of weeds and herbicide resistance. Read More...
Article
News

Power of crop rotation to combat herbicide resistance

It only takes one resistant plant to break an effective herbicide if selection pressure is high, and survivors set seed. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Michael & Marnie Fels, Wittenoom Hills WA

Narrow rows, stacked rotations and chaff lining at harvest are the central components to the Fels' weed management program. Read More...
Article
News

WeedSmart Big 6 on Mid North, Yorke Peninsula and Lower Eyre Peninsula farms

Get started with the WeedSmart Big 6 tailored for the Mid-North, YP and lower EP region of South Australia. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Wayne Zeisemer, Bongeen Qld

Wayne Zeisemer tackles hard-to-kill weeds with an optical spot sprayer, residual herbicides, strategic tillage in the fallow and zonal tillage to prepare a weed-free seedbed. Read More...
Article
News

We can’t afford to lose older chemistries

The Linklaters used crop rotation to overcome a brome grass infestation to expand their herbicide options. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Simon Burgess, Conara Tasmania

Reconfiguring paddocks for irrigation can bring up many issues related to previous management and land use, including weeds. Read More...
Article
News

Stop ryegrass in its tracks: First step is to prevent seed set

Bec and Ash Marshall have seen the benefits of resistance testing and implementing tactics that drive down weed numbers fast. Read More...
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How can I strengthen the pulse phase to combat weeds?

Many herbicide-tolerant pulse varieties are very specific in their tolerance to different active ingredients, even from the same mode of action group. Read More...
Article
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How can I use the WeedSmart Big 6 to keep old chemistry working?

Any herbicide program that relies heavily on one or two herbicide modes of action for a target weed is bound to fail eventually. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Michael Nichols, Sisters Creek, Tas

When herbicide resistant annual ryegrass arrived on their farm Michael Nichols knew he needed to prevent a ‘stop farming’ event. Read More...
Article
Ask an Expert

How does crop competition support other weed control tactics?

Crop competition is a quiet achiever in weed control that also has a synergistic effect when applied with other tactics. Read More...
Article
News

Australian grain growers tackle herbicide resistance

Australian grain growers are responding to the challenge of increasing herbicide resistance in weeds through the adoption of IWM practices. Read More...
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How to beat barley grass in two years

Barley grass control requires a two-year, multi-pronged strategy using crop competition, herbicide-tolerant crops and effective in-crop herbicides. Read More...
Article
Ask an Expert

How effective is a legume pasture phase for ryegrass control?

A single species pasture legume such as serradella can make a large dent in the seed bank of annual ryegrass and other grass weeds. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Tom Lampe, Narrabri NSW

Tom and Nikki Lampe, Narrabri use livestock to kept weeds at bay in their fallow cropping paddocks and minimise compaction using 'coolers'. Read More...
Article
News

Safe sorghum planting while controlling weeds

Changes to the label use patterns and the launch of a new seed safener product can expand the usefulness of S-metolachlor in sorghum. Read More...
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Can pulse cover crops tackle multi-resistant ryegrass in irrigated systems?

Field pea provides an effective winter fallow clean to manage resistant ryegrass ahead of planting rice or wheat. Read More...
Article
Ask an Expert

Can multi-species planting provide effective weed control?

Some crops simply don’t have a competitive edge, but a multi-species planting might offer extra punch to smother weeds. Read More...
Article
Ask an Expert

How can I set up my summer crops to help manage weeds?

It pays to plan ahead to manage weeds in winter fallows destined from summer crops – such as cotton, sorghum, mungbean and sunflower. Read More...
Article
Ask an Expert

How does ryegrass adapt so readily to farming practices and environmental changes?

Short rotations make it easy for weeds like annual ryegrass to adapt to multiple herbicide modes of action and cutural practices. Read More...
Article
Ask an Expert

How can I maximise grass weed control using hybrid canola?

For a competitive canola crop to halve grass weed seed set, use a vigorous variety, robust pre-em herbicide and the best agronomic package. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Single family, Coonamble NSW

The Singles gain good weed control year round using crops and fallow in both winter and summer on their farm near Coonamble. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Jason Rogers, Moree NSW

Keeping weed numbers down, managing patches and minimising weed seed set has been a high priority for Jason Rogers, Moree. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Andrew Kenny, Badgingarra WA

Andrew and Gina Kenny (Badgingarra, WA) use an integrated program of crop rotation, mouldboard ploughing, grazing and chaff lining to keep their weed numbers low. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Mat Freeman, Walkaway WA

While fixing the constraints associated with non-wetting sands is the primary reason for mouldboard ploughing, there is also a weed control benefit. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Day family, Lockhart NSW

Mark Day and his brother Steven run a highly efficient cropping rotation on their family farm at Lockhart, NSW. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Tim Rethus, Horsham Vic

Wimmera grower Tim Rethus and his family are taking an integrated approach to the weed management with a strong focus on weed-free crops. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Eagle family, Horsham

Sam and Emily Eagle say their livestock and cropping activities complement each other, keeping their pastures and crops performing at their best. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Paul Slack, Moree NSW

Dryland cotton and grain grower Paul Slack and his agronomist Tony Lockrey have been working on crop rotation options to deal with herbicide resistance in weeds. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Curry family – Junee, NSW

A desire to minimise the build-up of herbicide-resistant weeds on their Junee property in southern NSW is a driving force behind the Curry family farming operation. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Karl Raszyk & Robert Hughes, Scaddan WA

Karl Raszyk saw potential in the chaff tramlining system to help manage herbicide-resistant weeds. Read More...
Article
Article

RIM analysis – Michael and Marnie Fels, WA

Mic and Marnie Fels used RIM to test the sustainability of a double stacked crop rotation + harvest weed seed control system. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Kohlhagen Family, NSW

The Kohlhagens have developed and implemented a comprehensive weed management program for their 100 per cent cropping operation in southern NSW. Read More...
Article
News

IMI-tolerant crops – use sparingly and to best effect

Since the Clearfield technology was commercialised in 1992, plant breeders have developed the range of imi-tolerant summer and winter crops. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Mark Sandow, SA

Herbicide-resistant annual ryegrass has been an ongoing challenge for grain producers in the Mintaro area of South Australia since the 1980s. Read More...
Article
Ask an Expert

Is crop rotation an economic option for managing weeds?

Adding a broadleaf break crop to the cropping sequence helps keep wheat profitable in a sustainable cropping system. Read More...
Article
Ask an Expert

Will longer crop rotations really help manage weeds?

Crop and pasture rotation is the recipe for diversity Weeds love predictable rotations. They find it easy to evolve resistance to herbicides when they are used in a predictable manner. If we mix it up a bit, the weeds get confused and find it harder to adapt to the farming system. As well as confusing […]...

Podcasts

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Audio
Podcast

S09E03: Regional Update – James Kearines, Agronomist & Grower, Lake Cargelligo, NSW

James Kearines talks rainfall, frost, and how he's tackling weed control in the central NSW. Read More...
Audio
Podcast

S9E01: Regional Update – Matt Elliot, Grower & Agronomist, Nandaly, Vic

This week on the Regional Update, we are joined by grower and agronomist Matt Elliott. Read More...
Audio
Podcast

S8E22: Regional Update – Katrina Swift, Grower, Parkes, NSW

This week on the Regional Update, we are joined by grower Treen Swift who tells us how having 13 crop options available helps her family manage weed and insect pressure. Read More...
Audio
Podcast

S08E21: Diverse crop rotations to drive profit and sustainability

In this podcast we talk to two CSIRO scientists about the value of diverse cropping rotations in the northern and southern cropping regions. Read More...
Audio
Podcast

S8E20: Regional Update – Dan Skerman, Grower and Agronomist, Dalby, Qld

This week on the Regional Update, we are joined by grower and Nutrien agronomist Dan Skerman, who talks about his summer/winter rotation and the weed control practices he deploys on the farm. Read More...
Audio
Podcast

S08E12: Sheep as a strategic weed control tool and Dubbo WeedSmart Week preview

Sheep are being used as a strategic weed control tool on the Western Plains in NSW. This, as well as many other weed control tactics will be presented on at WeedSmart Week Dubbo. Read More...
Audio
Podcast

S08E07: Regional Update – Peter Galea, Grower, Emerald, Qld

This month on the Regional Update, we head to the Northern Region to chat with cotton and grains grower, Peter Galea, who is based just north of Emerald. Read More...
Audio
Podcast

S08E05: Regional Update – Tim Trezise, Agronomist, Frankland River, WA

Frankland River agronomist, Tim Trezise explains why there has been an increase in canola crops in his region on the Regional Update podcast. Read More...
Audio
Podcast

S08E04: Strip tillage benefits and farm biosecurity insights from Dalby WeedSmart Week presenters

In this episode, we focus on the Northern Region, as we get insights into two of our WeedSmart Week Dalby presenter's farming systems. Read More...
Audio
Podcast

S07E17: Considerations for Titan AX Barley and WeedSmart Week recap

Professor Chris Preston talks about what growers should consider when planting the new Titan AX Barley variety on this podcast episode and we get a recap on WeedSmart Week Mildura. Read More...
Audio
Podcast

S06E41: Diverse rotations rock – good for profit, weeds and nitrogen!

This is our last podcast of 2021, so thank you for joining us! On this episode we're focusing on diverse crop rotations and dealing with resistance. We hope there’s some helpful tips for you to take away.  Read More...
Audio
Podcast

Herbicide tolerant pulses provide promise for future

Crop and pasture rotation is the recipe for diversity Weeds love predictable rotations. They find it easy to evolve resistance to herbicides when they are used in a predictable manner. If we mix it up a bit, the weeds get confused and find it harder to adapt to the farming system. As well as confusing […]...
Audio
Podcast

Companion and intercropping piquing interest of Aussie farmers

Crop and pasture rotation is the recipe for diversity Weeds love predictable rotations. They find it easy to evolve resistance to herbicides when they are used in a predictable manner. If we mix it up a bit, the weeds get confused and find it harder to adapt to the farming system. As well as confusing […]...
Audio
Podcast

Crop selection, rotation tips and post-harvest spraying

On the last podcast for 2018, we spoke with Dr Haydn Kuchel, CEO & Head of Breeding at AGT Breeding. AGT Breeding develops new field crop varieties. Read More...

Case Studies

View all
Case Study
Case Study

Slarke family, Lake Grace WA

The Slarke family implement an integrated weed management program to minimise the impact of herbicide resistance on their farming business. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Jackson family, Gurley NSW

The 1700 ha family operation is based on a robust winter cropping program featuring wheat, barley, chickpea, canola and linseed to help keep weed numbers low and manage risk. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Rhys Daniels, Capella Qld

The Daniels run a predominantly summer-cropping program and have many tactics in place to keep their weed numbers down. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Michael & Marnie Fels, Wittenoom Hills WA

Narrow rows, stacked rotations and chaff lining at harvest are the central components to the Fels' weed management program. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Wayne Zeisemer, Bongeen Qld

Wayne Zeisemer tackles hard-to-kill weeds with an optical spot sprayer, residual herbicides, strategic tillage in the fallow and zonal tillage to prepare a weed-free seedbed. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Simon Burgess, Conara Tasmania

Reconfiguring paddocks for irrigation can bring up many issues related to previous management and land use, including weeds. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Michael Nichols, Sisters Creek, Tas

When herbicide resistant annual ryegrass arrived on their farm Michael Nichols knew he needed to prevent a ‘stop farming’ event. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Tom Lampe, Narrabri NSW

Tom and Nikki Lampe, Narrabri use livestock to kept weeds at bay in their fallow cropping paddocks and minimise compaction using 'coolers'. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Single family, Coonamble NSW

The Singles gain good weed control year round using crops and fallow in both winter and summer on their farm near Coonamble. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Jason Rogers, Moree NSW

Keeping weed numbers down, managing patches and minimising weed seed set has been a high priority for Jason Rogers, Moree. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Andrew Kenny, Badgingarra WA

Andrew and Gina Kenny (Badgingarra, WA) use an integrated program of crop rotation, mouldboard ploughing, grazing and chaff lining to keep their weed numbers low. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Mat Freeman, Walkaway WA

While fixing the constraints associated with non-wetting sands is the primary reason for mouldboard ploughing, there is also a weed control benefit. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Day family, Lockhart NSW

Mark Day and his brother Steven run a highly efficient cropping rotation on their family farm at Lockhart, NSW. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Tim Rethus, Horsham Vic

Wimmera grower Tim Rethus and his family are taking an integrated approach to the weed management with a strong focus on weed-free crops. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Eagle family, Horsham

Sam and Emily Eagle say their livestock and cropping activities complement each other, keeping their pastures and crops performing at their best. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Paul Slack, Moree NSW

Dryland cotton and grain grower Paul Slack and his agronomist Tony Lockrey have been working on crop rotation options to deal with herbicide resistance in weeds. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Curry family – Junee, NSW

A desire to minimise the build-up of herbicide-resistant weeds on their Junee property in southern NSW is a driving force behind the Curry family farming operation. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Karl Raszyk & Robert Hughes, Scaddan WA

Karl Raszyk saw potential in the chaff tramlining system to help manage herbicide-resistant weeds. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Kohlhagen Family, NSW

The Kohlhagens have developed and implemented a comprehensive weed management program for their 100 per cent cropping operation in southern NSW. Read More...
Case Study
Case Study

Mark Sandow, SA

Herbicide-resistant annual ryegrass has been an ongoing challenge for grain producers in the Mintaro area of South Australia since the 1980s. Read More...

Videos

View all
Video
Webinar

The economics of weeds — what they cost and the benefits of managing them effectively

In this webinar, we discuss the yield reduction weeds are responsible for and what a well-planned rotation for weed management can make a farming business. Read More...
Video
Webinar

Beating barley grass despite resistance and dormancy challenges

Learn how to control barley grass despite increasing dormancy and resistance challenges. Read More...
Video
Webinar

Can intercropping help with weed management?

Diverse rotations are a key aspect of the Big 6 and intercropping, despite its challenges, can provide opportunities for improving soils, weeds and risk management. Read More...
Video
Webinar

Mixed farming – does it really help control resistant weeds?

Greg Condon and Craig Drum discuss the weed challenges their clients have been experiencing, and how introducing livestock has helped solve these challenges. Read More...
Video
Video

Rod Birch on how the Big 6 is keeping weeds at bay at Catalina Farms

Rod Birch (Coorow, WA) gives an overview of what Big 6 principles are working for them. He also explas how they're approaching weed control at new property acquisition, 'Koobabbie', which hadn't changed hands for 115 years. Read More...
Video
Video

WeedSmart Week Forum Day Videos

Watch all the videos from our Esperance WeedSmart Week Forum Day! Read More...
Video
Webinar

What’s next in the North for weed control?

Agronomists Peter McKenzie and Angus Dalgliesh discuss the weed control tactics their clients have been using to deal with their weed challenges.  Read More...
Video
Video

What considerations should be made for glyphosate tolerant canola?

With GM canola becoming available in South Australia this season due to restrictions being lifted, WeedSmart’s High Rainfall Zone Extensions Agronomist, Jana Dixon, caught up with Clovercrest Consulting agronomist, Simon Mock to discuss what growers and agronomists need to be across on this topic. Read More...
Video
Webinar

Handling weeds in a strip and disc system

Crop and pasture rotation is the recipe for diversity Weeds love predictable rotations. They find it easy to evolve resistance to herbicides when they are used in a predictable manner. If we mix it up a bit, the weeds get confused and find it harder to adapt to the farming system. As well as confusing […]...
Video
Webinar

You don’t know what you don’t know about managing weeds

Crop and pasture rotation is the recipe for diversity Weeds love predictable rotations. They find it easy to evolve resistance to herbicides when they are used in a predictable manner. If we mix it up a bit, the weeds get confused and find it harder to adapt to the farming system. As well as confusing […]...
Video
Webinar

WeedSmart in HRZ – practical options for dealing with ryegrass

Crop and pasture rotation is the recipe for diversity Weeds love predictable rotations. They find it easy to evolve resistance to herbicides when they are used in a predictable manner. If we mix it up a bit, the weeds get confused and find it harder to adapt to the farming system. As well as confusing […]...
Video
Video

Preserving glyphosate through diversity

Crop and pasture rotation is the recipe for diversity Weeds love predictable rotations. They find it easy to evolve resistance to herbicides when they are used in a predictable manner. If we mix it up a bit, the weeds get confused and find it harder to adapt to the farming system. As well as confusing […]...

Fact Sheets

View all
Fact Sheet

Control barley grass in LRZ farming systems

Barley grass in Southern and Western regions requires 3 to 4 years of seed set control to run down the weed seed bank. Read More...
Fact Sheet

Wild radish factsheet

Growers are adopting diverse and integrated control strategies to manage herbicide resistant wild radish populations. Read More...
Fact Sheet

Maximising crops and minimising weeds with smart phase farming

View the data from this research as presented at the GRDC Update (West) on 22 April 2022. Read More...

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