Biological Farming Roundtable – Three Springs, WA
The aim of the BFR is to initiate discussion on biological farming, helping farmers explore innovative, low input, regenerative, profitable, productive farming systems. The group supports each other’s journey in an emerging regenerative agricultural paradigm where dominant conventional views can often be a barrier to change and success.
Anthony and Geraldine Thomas farm approx. 8000Ha in the North Midlands of W.A Three Springs 330 kms North of Perth, 160 kms South of Geraldton and about 80kms off the Coast. Anthony and Geraldine operate Hill Padua Polls, breeding multipurpose Merinos, and crop 1300 Ha regeneratively. Adam Thomas operates that rest of the cropping program. In total approximately 3600 Ha of crop is sown each year made up of Wheat/Barley/Canola and Lupins.
On pastures, 50kg/h of Guano was applied for three years from 2014 to 2017, and half a tonne of High Cal Lime and 5 L of NutriSoil p/Ha has been applied in the past two years.
Anthony has always been focused on soil heath starting in the 1970’s working with Agro Nutritional Research Laboratories run by the late Tom Arkley who analysed their soils and pastures. Arden Anderson has been another influence for Anthony who helped him understand that pH is not a measure of calcium, and the importance of calcium in his system.
For the past two years Anthony’s cropping system has included 15L/h of Flexi-N and 5L NutriSoil liquid inject at sowing, and again as a foliar at the five-leaf stage.
Anthony’s lambing percentage is up to 130%, his wool cut is high, and growth rates of young sheep are excellent. Anthony equates these factors to caring for his soil health.
Guest Speaker – Charles Massy
Charles Massy is a Monaro wool grower, a scientist and a renowned author. His classic book The Australian Merino: The Story of a Nation is the account of how Merino sheep became one of the main supports of the Australian economy. More recently, Charles’ Call of the Reed Warbler: A New Agriculture, a New Earth exemplifies his role as an advocate for regenerative agriculture.
Bookings are essential