Cropping

Corn drinks up sun and water

By Country News

While the hot summer is wilting some pastures a few irrigated summer crops are thriving.

At Katamatite, farmer Jarrod Lukies is happy with the progress of his 160ha of corn.

Traditionally grain croppers, his family moved into growing corn a few years ago and now has dedicated corn crops under travelling sprinklers.

‘‘We started when water costs were a bit lower, so it’s not so attractive now, but the prices have lifted, so there is still money in it,’’ Mr Lukies said.

‘‘You just have to manage it carefully. You don’t want to have even one bad day with the crop.’’

He said they had access to water and soils were good.

‘‘We’ve juiced it up a bit with manure and we run nitrogen through the irrigators.’’

The travelling irrigators provided a more efficient water delivery, which achieved not only cheaper water costs, but better yield.

Mr Lukies farms with his parents, Graham and Robyn.