New – Chill Newsletter Number 4, final for 2021, September 2021.
The PGAI Chill Newsletter no. 4, the final report for the 2021 winter season is available, outlining the dynamic chill unit accumulation in different Pistachio growing locations in Victoria, New South Wales, and South Australia. The data has been prepared by Dr. Jianlu Zhang and PGAI’s new Researcher Dr. Maha Mahadevan.
Records show insufficient chill accumulation for 2021 season (1st March to 31st August) in few pistachio growing regions, particularly the Riverland in SA and Sunraysia in VIC. This would potentially impact pistachio production for the season.
Key information :
- Riverland did not reach 59 Dynamic Chill units requiring growers to take up mitigation action such as oil or polymer sprays.
- Sunraysia showed sufficient Dynamic chill units, however, had below average hours less than 7 degrees Celsius (alternate model for chill requirement)
A survey has been set up to collect and compile information on the actions taken to mitigate the issue, the impact it has on uniformity, earliness of bud burst, flowering, and nut set ultimately yield and quality. Capturing and uploading photos would be a great visual representation.
Provision has been provided to upload photos.
This will be a highly valuable information that will help understand and model low chill mitigation practices specific to a geographical location, its interaction with weather parameters and response of the pistachio trees. It will assist develop robust and efficient mitigation strategy through future research.
Thank you in advance for taking up the survey: Click here to access the survey: Chill Survey 2021
The Final Chill Newsletter Number 4 can be downloaded here: Chill Newsletter No4_20210920
New – Chill Newsletter Number 3 August 2021.
This gives growers valuable information to determine chill mitigation actions over the coming weeks.
We would make the following additional comments:
- The Riverland is most unlikely to receive sufficient chill this season. Riverland growers should be considering taking mitigating action with oil sprays at the higher concentrations and the higher application rates.
- The situation in Sunraysia is not clear. The Dynamic model shows sufficient chill for Swan Hill but border line for Mildura/Merbein. The alternative chill model of <7OC shows insufficient chill for all of Sunraysia. Growers need to consider their own orchard most carefully.
If you require any additional assistance please do not hesitate to contact relevant people within the Industry.
Download the Chill newsletter here: Chill Newsletter No 3 August 2021
You can read more about chilling requirements here: Chilling Requirements (log in may be required)
Chill Newsletter Number 2 July 2021.
Winter chill to the end of July continues very mixed. The main growing areas of Sunraysia and the Riverland are continuing to be having below average chill with a high risk of not achieving sufficient chill to the end of August, the eastern end of the growing area such as Griffith and Wagga Wagga are enjoying above average chill.
Download the Chill newsletter here: Chill Newsletter No 2 July 2021
You can read more about chilling requirements here: Chilling Requirements (log in may be required)
Chill Newsletter Number 1 June 2021.
Chill data across the relevant Australian sites up to the 1st of July 2021. The chill across the regions are either slightly up or down compared to the averages. The next newsletter at the end of July should hopefully give a clearer picture.
Download the Chill newsletter here: Chill Newsletter No 1 June 2021
Media Release – ANAO assessment of the department’s response to biosecurity non-compliance – 7 June 2021
The ANAO has completed an audit to assess the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment’s effectiveness in responding to non-compliance with biosecurity requirements. The department agreed to all eight recommendations in the ANAO report.
Head of Biosecurity at the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, Andrew Tongue, said the report identified timely recommendations to improve the department’s arrangements to respond to non-compliance with biosecurity.
“Although Australia’s current biosecurity system has served our country well, the department recognises that the system must continue to evolve to enable appropriate management of known and emerging threats both domestically and globally,” Mr Tongue said.
“Prior to the audit, the department had already commenced a body of work to enhance its compliance arrangements and regulatory practice.
“In particular the department is undertaking a range of changes and improvements through the development of its Regulatory Practice Statement and Regulatory Practice Framework.
“We are committed to protecting Australia’s biosecurity status and our agricultural industries by minimising the entry of new pests, diseases and weeds and regularly making improvements.
“The Australian Government’s significant investment in its Biosecurity Package in the 2021-22 Budget and the recently released Commonwealth Biosecurity 2030 will further position the department to address the audit findings.
“The Budget investment will boost our frontline people and resources, strengthen our partnerships with industry and the community, and modernise our ICT systems, technology and data analytics to better target risk and speed up clearance times.
“Commonwealth Biosecurity 2030 will help the government build a stronger, smarter biosecurity system.
“Through addressing growing biosecurity risks and making sure we have the best controls, tools, processes and networks in place into the future we can continue to safeguard Australia’s agricultural industries, environment and exports.”
We’re Hiring – Pistachio Researcher Wanted.
Would you like to help growers in one of the best horticultural industries in Australia? Well, here’s your chance.
To maintain a highly profitable industry that is sustainable and rewarding for existing growers and attractive to new growers – the industry is committed to employing a person to drive the research work and communicate with growers the benefits of changing production practices.
We need the services of a Pistachio Researcher to continue past and current work and who can determine and advise growers to achieve this vision.
Read more here: Pistachio Researcher_Initial Notice_May 2021
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all PGAI Members
2020 was indeed a difficult year with the pandemic figuring prominently – tempered by a generally good harvest and a thriving industry. However, I’m sure many of us will be pleased to see the end of 2020! To that end from PGAI and the Committee, may you all have a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Safe New Year. Here’s to time spent with family and friends, good cheer and a successful 2021!
Minimising drip system drainage
Drip irrigation has become the standard irrigation system adopted for irrigated horticulture. Most irrigators are generally operating at a high level of efficiency. Recent observations have highlighted that drip irrigators can achieve even greater efficiencies by addressing system drainage (often referred to as ‘drain-out’). Reducing the level of system drainage will result in a more even water application, a reduction in localised rootzone waterlogging and crop productivity loss.
Agriculture Victoria has produced a 6 page document on the hows and whys and can be found here: Minimising drip drainage
Alternatively, you can find this paper and further information on the Irrigation Management page in the members section – Pistachio Production Puzzle
Latest 2020 Chill Newsletters, Issue 3 and 4
The last two chill newsletters are available for download. Most growing areas have already achieved, as of the 13th August 2020, the recommended 59 Dynamic Chill units for this season.
- Newsletter 3 can be found here: Chill Newsletter No 3_14th August 2020
- Newsletter 4 can be found here: Chill Newsletter No 4_31st August 2020
All the Chill newsletters and further information on Chill Requirements can be found in the (password protected) Member’s section Chilling Requirements
Late Winter/Spring Seasonal Notes out now.
Dr Ben Thomas has prepared his latest update at what is needed to be done to prepare for the 2020/2021 growing season. Download and read more here: Seasonal-Notes_Winter_Spring_2020
Previous Seasonal Notes and other PGAI newsletters can be found here: PGAI Newsletters
July 2020 Chill Newsletter
Winter chill so far has been above average. Most areas are likely to achieve the chill found by research to be sufficient. More information and the regional chill accumulation graphs can be found in the newsletter: Chill Newsletter No 2_31st July 2020
More information on Chill Requirements can be found in the (password protected) Member’s section Chilling Requirements
New – Oil Trial on Young Trees at Waikerie
Paul undertook a trial on his property in August of 2019 to help decide whether to use Summer or Winter oil on his young Pistachio trees in the dormant stage using oil applications between 1% and 3%.
Read the outcomes from the trial here: Waikerie_Oil_Trial_Young_Trees_
Winter Pruning of Pistachio Trees
A new video series showing techniques for winter pruning of pistachio trees at Kyalite Pistachios. The trees are modified central leader from year 1 through to year 4 with Andrew Bowring sharing his knowledge.
Contact Trevor or Craig if you have forgotten your password
Permit Number – PER80806 for control of BOTRYTIS ROT and ALTERNARIA LEAF SPOT in Pistachios has been updated
This permit has been updated and is current until the 31st of August 2025. The permit can be downloaded from the PGAI website Permit page – Note: this page is password protected.
Contact Trevor or Craig if you have forgotten your password.
Pistachio Chill Requirements 2020 – Newsletter Number 1 out now.
Please find linked below the PGAI Chill Newsletter No 1 – 28th June 2020. The results so far are promising with Chill hours above average in all sites. The next Newsletter will be available at the end of July 2020.
Download and read the newsletter here: Chill Newsletter No 1_28th June 2020
Alternatively, you can look at the Chiling Requirements page on the PGAI website here
California Pistachio Task List July 2020
Bob Bede’s latest paper on the state-of-play in the Californian Pistachio Industry. This year’s crop is estimates range from 750 to around 950 million pounds. Like 2018, this year’s cool spring suggests harvest is going to be later than “normal”, since early season photosynthesis and carbon fixation is not optimized under cool temperatures.
Download and read the newsletter here: Pistachio_Tasks85624
Pistachio Industry Newsletter, Volume 13, June 2020
The latest Technical Bulletin from PGAI. Six pages of the latest locan and overseas news, technology and production solutions.
Download and read the newsletter here: Pistachio newsletter tech_June 20
California Pistachio Task List June 2020
Bob Bede’s latest missive on the state-of-play in the Californian Pistachio Industry. A ‘False Spring’ causing some concern with regard to early season leaf production.
Download and read the newsletter here: Pistachio_Tasks85040
May 2020 Ag Chemical Update from Hort Innovation
This is a summary of various regulatory issues and chemical reviews currently underway both locally and internationally, produce by Kevin Bodnaruk of AKC Consuting.
Download and read the newsletter here: ag-chemical-update-may-2020
Coronavirus: Covid-19 Update
There is a lot going on in relation to the Coronavirus and I am sure there is some level of confusion.With harvest underway or about to start it is important that you as a business and/or an employer undertake good business practices.
On behalf of PGAI we have put together this initial package of information – as Version 1.
It is a compilation of material from a range of sources. As more information becomes available we will update the package. While this information is supplied by PGAI it is information supplied for you to use as a starting point and you should where necessary seek professional/legal advice.
If these is any information you require at any time please do not hesitate to contact me.
A PGAI webpage dedicated to Covid-19 has been set up and all new information will be published on that page. That page hasa link on the front page under the Latest News tab but can also be found by clicking here – Covid-19
Regards and keep safe. Trevor Ranford and PGAI Executive and Staff.
PISTACHIO SEASONAL REMINDERS SUMMER & PRE- HARVEST 2019/2020
Dr Ben Thomas has provided the latest in his seasonal reminder series.
MANAGEMENT DURING NUT FILL
We are now in the nut fill period of the pistachio production cycle which is a critical phase of the pistachio production cycle when the kernel grows and causes the shell to split. Good management during this phase will maximise kernel growth and shell splitting. Key issues at this time are understanding kernel development, managing irrigation and nutrition and preparing the orchard for harvest. This is also the time for leaf analysis and budding young trees.
• Kernel development. During the nut fill period, the kernel within fruit start to grow and fill the shell. The start of this period varies each season and flowering and fruit set was variable this season for many growers. As such, understanding the range of kernel development is very important when considering irrigation and fertiliser applications as well as being very valuable when estimating the start of harvest.
From the team at PGAI; Trevor Ranford, Craig and Subha, and the hardworking committees we wish you a Very Merry Christmas and a Safe and Prosperous New Year.
Agriculture, water and environment – a positive move for Australia
The changes to departmental structures announced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison today will strengthen the Government’s ability to deliver effective policy outcomes across agriculture, water and the environment for all Australians.
Environment, water and agriculture are inextricably linked across regional and rural Australia and metropolitan centres. Bringing together the environment and agriculture departments will provide greater synergies to the policies and programs that underpin regional Australia and our agriculture, fisheries and forestry industries. Managing our natural environment, our water, our land, our soils and air together makes sense. Farmers and our agricultural industries are at the frontline of Australia’s conservation and environmental efforts. We look forward to working even more closely together to deliver a practical environmental agenda that delivers for our farmers, who manage more than 50 per cent of Australia’s land mass and which supports the Morrison Government’s national environmental agenda.
We wish to sincerely thank outgoing Agriculture Department Secretary Daryl Quinlivan for his many years of outstanding leadership and tremendous policy advice. Daryl has been a dedicated and utterly professional public servant. We look forward to working with the new Secretary of the Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment, Mr Andrew Metcalfe.
This is a merging of departmental resources, not portfolios. From a portfolio perspective each minister will maintain their own policy objectives.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Minister McKenzie: Kate Filor, 0466 862 598, Minister Ley: John Brady 0427 867 638, Minister Littleproud: Douglas Ferguson 0455 448 985
Best practice biodiversity management front and centre
The Liberal and Nationals Government is delivering on an election commitment to explore the need and current tools available to farmers that could turn their natural resource management into increased profits.
Minister for Agriculture, Senator Bridget McKenzie, said the National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) was looking at the positive environmental contributions in the agriculture supply chain under the $4 million Australian Farm Biodiversity Certification Scheme Trial. “The use of sustainability standards has the potential to boost farm incomes if farms are certified as achieving high environmental standards,” Minister McKenzie said.
“Our farmers are our nation’s greatest environmentalists—they care for more than half of our land mass. “It makes sense that farmers’ good practices are recognised as consumers demand more information about how the food they eat and the fibre they use is produced.
“This project is about making sure that any certification or verification scheme delivers benefits for farmers and means something for consumers. “The NFF will work with farmers to develop and showcase innovative examples of best practice biodiversity management of natural resources.
“It will research existing schemes, sustainability frameworks and best management practices, and will also assess the readiness of farmers to participate in schemes. “The NFF will also work with farmers on how plant and animal pest management practices can deliver productivity improvements. “The scheme is part of the Agriculture Stewardship Package—a $34 million election commitment that aims to integrate productivity, sustainability and biodiversity on farms to provide lasting benefits to farmers and community.”
Further information about the Australian Farm Biodiversity Certification Scheme will be available on the Department of Agriculture’s website shortly.
Media contact: Kate Filor, 0466 862 598
PGAI Pistachio Spring Symposium 2019
To be held on Wednesday 11th September 2019, in the Acacia Room at Agriculture Victoria
Mildura Research Centre, Corner Eleventh St and Koorlong Ave Irymple VIC 3498
This symposium will:
o Update current research in Australia on Pistachios.
o Discussions on irrigation and water.
o Provide a forum for questions and answers in relation to establishing orchards and orchard management.
o Update members on PGAI activities.
Get your RSVP in now. Please find the more information on the program and the registration form here: Pistachio workshop – program September 2019_Members
Hort Innovation Call for Non-Executive Directors
Three Director positions are available on the Hort Innovation Board this year and the recruitment process has begun with a nation-wide advertising campaign and other below-the-line marketing activities.
Rimfire Resources have been appointed as the specialist recruiters, and any queries regarding the Director positions should be referred to Mick Hay or Sharon Moloney – their contact details are available on the AGM 2019 page on our website. Applications close on Monday 8 July, 2019.
Information and documentation on the positions, the skills that are required and the recruitment and application process can be found on Hort Innovation’s website here: http://www.horticulture.com.au/agm-2019
AGM: Hort Innovation’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) 2019 will be held on 22 November in Sydney. We encourage members of the company to become involved and will send you more information over the coming months as well as publish it on our website at: http://www.horticulture.com.au/agm-2019
For levy-paying members
If you are a levy-paying member and would like to vote at the AGM this year, we remind you to:
- Ensure your company nominated representative email and postal address details are up to date. If you are unsure or believe they may have changed, contact Hort Innovation on (02) 8295 2300 or: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Complete your levy return form in a timely manner – this will be sent directly to you in August. We encourage online levy returns but also provide an option in hard copy.
For non-levy-paying members
Non-levy-paying members of Hort Innovation are welcome to attend the AGM and ask questions. You are also encouraged to update your contact details if they have changed over the year. You can do this by contacting Hort Innovation on (02) 8295 2380 or: http://email@example.com.
Click here for the complete press release in PDF form: HI_AGM_directors_Press
Demand for pistachios is going nuts giving growers good reason to smile. ABC News online article 14/04/2019
Despite expanding their orchard Martin and James Simpfendorfer cannot keep up with demand. Photo courtesy ABC Rural: Jessica Schremmer.
A cold winter and hot summer has given pistachio growers good reason to celebrate, with many farmers harvesting great volumes despite being in the “off-year” crop cycle — and demand for the green nut is rising rapidly. Robinvale pistachio grower and director of Australian Pioneer Pistachio Company, Chris Joyce, said looking at the two-year average the industry was doing well and growers were confident.
“Pistachios are an alternate-bearing crop, so one year they have a big crop and the next year they have a much lesser crop,” he said. “In 2018 we had a record crop and in 2019 we had the inevitable off-crop, significantly less than the previous crop. Read the full article here: Pistachios_Simpfendorfer_12_04_2019
The May 2019 Task List for Pistachios by Bob Beede, University of California farm advisor now available.
The latest task list for pistachios by Bob Beede. Even though the Caliufornians received good winter chilling this year, the cool spring weather has delayed pistachio leaf out and bloom by five to seven days. This spring is a great example of how, even with good chilling, pistachio plant development can be delayed by cool temperatures.
As usual it is full of great information – but remember the US season is 6 months out! Read it here – Pistachio_Tasks79816
April 2019 PIT Group Sessions at Fisher in SA and Merbein in Victoria – report available.
The 2019 Autumn Sessions of the PGAI PIT Group program was well attended in the two locations (Riverland and Sunraysia) they were held. Darin Gladigau’s property at Fisher in SA and Tim Beard’s property at Merbein in Victoria.
- Understanding Pistachio Pollination / Managing Male Trees, presented by Dr. Ben Thomas
- Pistachio Research Update, presented by Dr Subha Abeysinghe
- 2019 Pistachio Harvest Update prepared by Chris Joyce and presented by Trevor Ranford
- The importance of Orchard Quality Assurance, presented by Tim Beard
More information and photographs of the days can be found here: April 2019 PIT Group Sessions
The April 2019 Task List for Pistachios by Bob Beede, University of California farm advisor now available.
The latest task list for pistachios by Bob Beede. As usual it is full of great information – but remember the US season is 6 months out! Read it here – Pistachio_Tasks79329
Alternatively find it with Bob’s previous newsletters in the Latest Newsletters page on the PGAI website.
Announcement on Biosecurity Steering Committee – 5th March 2019
Minister for Agriculture David Littleproud has announced the chair and members of the biosecurity levy steering committee.
The committee contains representatives from industry and farm groups to help steer an informed delivery for the levy, which will see importers pay for biosecurity border screening.
The Chair will be Mr David Trebeck. Mr Trebeck currently chairs Australia’s Oyster Coast Ltd and has been a non-executive director of six ASX-listed companies since 1997, including GrainCorp Ltd (13 years) and Incitec Pivot Ltd, and has been involved in shipping since 1974.
He was a non-executive director of the shipping company, AP Moller Maersk, a National Water Commissioner, director of the Australian Meat and Livestock Corporation and contributed to the Commonwealth Government inquiries into Long Term Policy for the Agriculture and Food Sector, Fuel Taxation, Biosecurity and three Commonwealth Fisheries. He also worked with the National Farmers Federation from 1972-1983 and co-authored the Beale Review into biosecurity in 2008.
The steering committee will also include Paul Zalei from the Freight Trade Alliance; Margie Thomson from the Cement Industry Federation, Mike Gallacher from Ports Australia, Mike Sousa from Qube Holdings, Rod Nairn AM from Shipping Australia, Brian Lovell from the Australian Federation of International Forwarders, and Tony Mahar from the National Farmers Federation.
“Australia’s border biosecurity protects our food supply, 300,000 jobs, the $60 billion agriculture industry and our way of life,” Minister Littleproud said.
“If our border biosecurity is breached and say foot and mouth disease entered Australia, consumers would pay much more for meat and the losses to farmers would be around $50 billion.
“Those creating biosecurity risk should contribute fairly to addressing that risk, remembering pests and diseases arrive on the hulls and decks of ships and not just in the imported product itself.
“If the taxpayer alone bears the burden of protecting Australia then companies being bailed out by the taxpayer are unlikely to take our biosecurity seriously.”
Minister Littleproud said he was also glad Joel Fitzgibbon has put the following on record:
‘Labor supports the rationale for the biosecurity levy. Labor is committed to a properly funded biosecurity system.’
News Media release can be found here
The Pistachio Industry Newsletter P.I. News, Technical Bulletin for January 2019.
This ‘Technical Edition’ of PI News is prepared as one of the outputs of Project PS17002 – Technology Transfer for Pistachio growers utilising regional grower Tech Groups (PIT Groups) & events. Topics include:
- ABARES Outlook Conference 2019
- Trial of the VELCRO® Brand – 50mm x 45m Blue UV Plant Tie Product
- Getting biosecurity zoning right
- Farm chemical safety videos and much more….
PGAI Seasonal Notes for January 2019 by Dr Ben Thomas.
We are now in the nut fill period of the pistachio production cycle which is a critical phase of the pistachio production cycle when the kernel grows and causes the shell to split. Good management during this phase will maximise kernel growth and shell splitting. Key issues at this time are understanding kernel development, managing irrigation and nutrition and preparing the orchard for harvest. This is also the time for leaf analysis and budding young trees. Read more here: Seasonal Notes_January 2019
Managing the risks of working in heat from Safe Work Australia.
Working in heat can be hazardous and can cause harm to workers. The human body needs to maintain a body temperature of approximately 37 degrees Celsius. If the body has to work too hard to keep cool or starts to overheat a worker begins to suffer from heat-related illness. This guide produced by Safe Work Australia shows you how to manage the risks. Download the guide here: guide_for_managing_the_risks_of_working_in_heat_1
University of California January 2019 Pistachio Tasks by Bob Beede.
January 2019 Task List for Pistachios, by Bob Beede, UCCE Farm Advisor, Emeritus. A good read, guaranteed as usual by Bob, but keep in mind the 6 month difference! Link Here: Pistachio_Tasks77712
Latest US Chill paper by Dr Louise Ferguson and others.
California growers in the San Joaquin Valley believe that climate change will affect
the pistachio yield dramatically. As the central valley fog disappears, insufficient dormant chill
accumulation results in poor flowering synchrony, flower quality, and fruit set in this dioecious
species. We have developed a novel, user-friendly, and low-cost Voice-Controlled Wireless Solid Set Canopy Delivery (VCW-SSCD) system to increase bud chill accumulation with evaporative cooling on sunny (winter) days.
The paper can be found in the PGAI Chilling Requirements page here
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
Another year draws to a close and a new one about to start. Overall it has been a great year for the Australian Pistachio Industry and on behalf of the PGAI I would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a safe, happy and prosperous New Year! Please take care over the Christmas – New Year period. See you all in 2019!
Workplace Health and Safety
You may not realise it but farming is one of the most dangerous occupations in Australia. Only one in 10 workplaces are farms, yet they account for one quarter of all work-related deaths. Children under 15 years and adults over 65 years are more likely than others to be injured or killed on farms. Males are more likely to be injured than females.
You can reduce the risk of farm injuries and illness at your farm by evaluating the risks and taking steps to minimise them. Accidents can be prevented through better farmer education, making sure equipment is well maintained and has adequate safety features, having safety procedures in place, and training every worker and family member about potential dangers and the proper, safe use of equipment and machinery
Link to the PGAI WHS webpage here
Voice of Horticulture welcomes Federal Government’s endorsement to strengthen Australia’s biosecurity.
The Federal Government has agreed to all recommendations made in an independent review of the Intergovernmental Agreement on Biosecurity (IGAB) – which has a mandate to strengthen Australia’s national biosecurity system. Peak horticulture body, the Voice of Horticulture has welcomed the news, saying the review of the IGAB also represented a commitment by all governments to build a stronger national biosecurity system to meet any new challenges and protect Australia’s farming future. Full Press Release here: VoH Media Release -20181130
PMA A-NZ Produce Executive Program
The 2019 PMA A-NZ Produce Executive Program is now open for enrolment. The program is a fully
residential business school style executive course combining skill development, industry learning and networking led by world class teachers alongside senior industry leaders.
Early Bird Discount: Get $500 off the program fee if you register by the 25th of January, 2019. Or get 10% off for 3 participants, 15% for 4 or 20% for 5. The 2018 program was fully booked so get in early to avoid missing out! Download the brochure here: 2019-Produce-Executive-Program
NEW – November PIT Group and New Grower PIT Group Presentations and Photographs on-line now.
The very successful November 2018 PIT Group session at Martin Simpfendorfer’s property in the Riverland and Lake Powell session at Peter Holt’s property are now on-line. Presentations and pictures can be downloaded here. The presentations from the 2018 PGAI Symposium (Dr Bruce Lampinen’s talk and other presenter’s information) can be found here
PGAI NEW GROWER INFORMATION DAY
PGAI is proposing to have a special PIT Group solely aimed at new and prospective pistachio growers. This is a meeting specifically aimed at new growers (with young trees) and those investigating growing pistachios.
The New Grower PIT Group meeting will start at 9 (registration) for 9.30am start. Lunch 12-1, then by 1.30pm out to Josh Boram’s property for a session 1.30 to 3 pm.
Robinvale: Thursday 22nd of November, 9 am sharp
Address: Robinvale Golf Club, 4240 Murray Valley Hwy, Robinvale VIC 3549
Josh Boram’s property, Corner of Mills Lane and Murray Valley Highway,
Boundary Bend, Victoria, 3599
- Site selection/soils/soil analysis
- Tree selection/rootstocks/planting density/male tree percentage
- Pests and diseases (reference to 2011/orchard sanitation)
- Tree growth/budding/pruning/central leader etc
- What happens to the crop after harvesting?
Contact Craig on 0437 307 590 for more information or download the invite here: PIT Groups -November New Grower sessions – 2018 – Detailed program
PIT Groups – SPRING SESSIONS, November 20th and 21st. RSVP NOW.
This round of PIT Group meetings is an update on nutrition management and budgeting for your orchard, a pest and disease update and resultant sanitation and biosecurity needs. The Pistachio Industry’s new researcher, Dr Subhashini Abeysinghe will also present a research update.
Paringa: Tuesday 20th of November, 12 Noon sharp
Address: Martin Simpfendorfer’s property, Permedah Fruits, 21731 Sturt Highway, Parings, South Australia, 5340
Lake Powell: Wednesday 21st of November, 12 Noon sharp
Address: Peter Holt’s property, 76 Zara Lane, Lake Powell, Victoria, 3597
TOPICS (for both meetings):
- Pistachio nutrition/ nutrition budgeting/ foliar nutrition/ K Ben Thomas
- Pistachio pests and beneficials (almond pests highlighted) Stuart Pettigrew
- Orchard sanitation/biosecurity Brett Rosenzweig
- Pistachio Research Update Dr Subha Abeysinghe
Contact Craig on 0437 307 590 for more information or download the invite here: PIT Groups -November sessions – 2018 – Detailed program
NEW- QLD Gov/HIAL Online Chill Calculator
This site accesses daily weather station data for the period 1968 to the current year for 600 locations across Australia. This data is used to make calculations for the accumulation of winter chill and growing degree days/hours.
Because the chill and growing degree day calculations are based on weather data from the Long Paddock SILO, the calculations can only be updated when the weather data becomes available. The weather data from yesterday is usually available after about midday (AEST). The Long Paddock SILO uses data form the Bureau of Meteorology and patches this to create complete daily data sets. Stations that no longer record temperature data are synthetically in-filled with gridded data derived from statistical analysis.
All calculations are performed using the chillR package of Luedeling et al. (2013) & Luedeling (2017). The website has been developed by the QLD Government in conjunction with Hort Innovation.
Link to the Website Here: Online Chill Calculator
Or access through the Chilling Requirement Page : https://www.pgai.com.au/chilling-requirements
Two Industry Stalwarts Honoured with PGAI Life Memberships.
Barb Isaacson and Dennis Lambert were recognised for their service to the Pistachio Industry and PGAI (approximately 30 years) with Life Membership Awards at the 2018 PGAI Symposium at Robinvale. Two deserving recipients. Well done!
Pictures: PGAI President Chris Lee awards Barb Isaacson and Dennis Lambert with Life Membership to PGAI.
Pistachio Irrigation Research Paper by Louise Ferguson et. al.
Sustainability of pistachio production (Pistacia vera L.) under supplemental
irrigation in a Mediterranean climate. The paper looks at the effects of supplemental micro-irrigation in a commercial rainfed orchard. Irrigating with 10–15% of estimated full evaporative demand significantly increased average annual productivity by increasing yield in the on-crop year of this alternate bearing species. Irrigation increased yield by 30%, resulting in 1600 kg of in-shell product per ha. You can download and read the research paper here: Marinoetal2018
2018 PGAI Symposium, Robinvale. RSVP Now Please.
The Pistachio Spring Symposium and Annual General Meeting will be held:
ON: Thursday 13th September 2018
AT: 8:30 am at CMV Farms, Robinvale.
Followed by meeting at 10:00 am at the Robinvale Golf Club.
We have Dr Bruce Lampinen from the University of California as the keynote speaker.
This symposium will:
- Update current research in Australia on Pistachios.
- Present the various methods to tree pruning
- Provide a forum for questions and answers in relation to establishing new orchards and other orchard management.
- Update members on PGAI activities
Download the program (with attached RSVP form) and register today – Pistachio workshop – program September 2018
Tenth Edition Of the National Plant Biosecurity Status Report by PHA now available.
The tenth edition of the National Plant Biosecurity Status Report has been released this week by Plant Health Australia. The report is a guide to how Australia protects itself against exotic plant pests and diseases and reveals the tremendous effort being made across the country to sustain our plant industries, unique ecosystems and standards of living.
This year the report displays the system through the three layers of protection: pre-border, at the border and post-border, with examples of how the this works in specific circumstances. It details the efforts being made by everyone involved in plant biosecurity, be they the Australian or state governments, industries, research agencies and the community.
You can download your PDF copy Here: Status-Report-2017
2018 Chill newsletter out now.
Winter 2018 started out being very warm with few Chill Portions accumulated. June has been colder than average bringing the accumulated Chill close to average. We still need a cold July and August.
Further reports will be issued by the PGA on 30th July and 15th August to allow growers to plan for mitigation action should this be necessary. Download the report: PGAI Chill Newsletter No 1_5th July 2018
Historical Chill information can be found here: Chilling Requirements
June 2018 PIT Group meeting videos and presentations are now uploaded.
The June 2018 round of PIT Groups were held at the Loxton Research Centre and Irymple Research Centre (AgVic). 28 growers and Industry people attended the meetings. Dr Ben Thomas spoke on the winter pruning of mature trees, Dr Cathy Taylor gave an excellent presentation on Carpophilus beetle and the devasation it has caused in the almond industry and the vital importance of orchard sanitation. Blair Grossman continued the theme with Carob Moth, Chris Joyce described the new APPC benchmarking data set and Craig Feutrill describe how to navigate the PGAI PIT Group website.
Pistachio Pest Detector
As seen during the June 2018 PIT Group meetings, pests whether new to Australia or old pests of other crops that have changed lifestyle/food sources can cause enormous amounts of damage. There is a page now that you can report pests whether insects or diseases to PGAI, Plant Health Australia or your local Department of Agriculture. Link Here: Pest Detector
New – Dr. Jianlu Zhang’s Farewell – Retirement Dinner, Mildura Friday 8th of June (updated).
Thirty three members and guests gathered at the Grand Hotel Bistro on a cold, wet Friday night to honour Dr. Jianlu Zhang’s contribution to the Pistachio Industry in Australia over the last 15 years. Dr Zhang’s research has had significant impact on pistachio production within Australia and internationally as well. Thanks to James Simpfendorfer there are now 4 videos of the evenings speeches and presentations.
For more pictures and the videos of the night, go to Jianlu’s Farewell page: Dr Jianlu Zhang’s Farewell
If you have any photographs from the night, please forward them to me as I would like to include them on the webpage.
Don’t Forget: Dr Jianlu Zhang’s Retirement Dinner This Friday 8th June.
PGAI invites you to a night of celebration as Dr Jianlu Zhang retires after 15 years of pistachio research and development.
VoH welcomes Federal Budget’s support of export markets and biosecurity
The continued efforts made by Voice of Horticulture (VoH) in lobbying the Federal Government in terms of a policy and budget focus on biosecurity and exports, has seen fruition in this week’s 2018/19 Budget.
Chair, Tania Chapman welcomed the announcement of five key points relating to biosecurity, the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) and export trade assistance and said they would provide invaluable support in improving market access and on gaining new export opportunities.
Ms Chapman said the “real coup” was the announcement of additional funding to represent six Agricultural Trade Counsellors in six new countries, to be included in the United Kingdom, Mexico, Japan, India, Chile and Russia, now extending the total number of Agricultural Trade Counsellors to 22.
Read the Press Release here: VoH Media Release – VoH welcomes Federal Budget’s support of export markets and biosecurity
Voice of Horticulture calls for policies to be put in place to deal with harassment
With the current volatile political environment, the Voice of Horticulture is calling on all its members to ensure they have the correct policies and procedures in place within their organisation to deal with sexual harassment and bullying.
Voice of Horticulture Chair, Tania Chapman said: “The Board’s aim is to ensure that all its members are protected and have a complete grasp on all sexual harassment and bullying issues which could affect an organisation, as well as their employees and volunteers”.
Ms Chapman stressed that “…whilst the focus is currently on women, we should remember that it can also include males within the organisation”.
“Our total aim should be for respect and equal opportunity regardless of age or gender” she added.
Read more of the press release here: VoH Media Release – policies_2018
California’s Pistachio and Almond Industry Presentation
David Doll from UCCE Merced’s presentation from the Second Pistachio Spring Symposium, held in Mildura in November 2017. Presentation is in in PDF format. Read more here: PistachioPresentationAustralia_opt
For Videos of David’s presentation at the Symposium click this link (login required): https://www.pgai.com.au/industry-videos#Mildura2017
Bob Beede, University of California February Task List.
The latest update from Bob Beede on the Californian Pistachio Industry. The update covers Rain and Irrigation (no rain!), an update on chill requirements, the use of oil for the new season as well as pest and disease management. Read more here: Pistachio_Tasks_USA_Cali_Feb_18
Note: USA and other newsletters can be accessed via https://www.pgai.com.au/latest-newsletters
Pistachio Seasonal Reminders. Summer and Pre-Harvest 2017/2018. An update by Ben Thomas.
Welcome to 2018! Hopefully, you all had a break during the Festive period and are refreshed and ready for the upcoming harvest period.
We are now in the nut fill period of the pistachio production cycle which is a critical phase when the kernel grows and causes the shell to split. Key orchard management issues at this time are irrigation and nutrition. This is also the time to prepare the orchard for harvest, take leaf analysis samples and bud young trees. Read more here: SummerPreharvest 2017-2018
For Older News Items click here: News Archive
PGAI Newsletters – keep up-to-date!
December 2015 Newsletter: 14 Pistachio-newsletter-vol-6-dec-15
September 2015 Newsletter: 13 Pistachio-newsletter-vol-5-sept-15
Aug/Sept 2015 Seasonal Reminders Newsletter: 12 Seasonal Reminders Late-Winter-Early-Spring-2015-Final
May 2015 Newsletter: 11 Pistachio-newsletter-vol-4-May-15
December 2014 Newsletter: 10 Pistachio newsletter Vol 3 Dec 14
November 2014 Newsletter: 09 Pistachio newsletter vol 2 15-Nov-14
January 2014 Newsletter: 08 Pistachio January Newsletter – 14 Jan 2014
December 2013 Newsletter: 07 Pistachio December 2013 Newsletter
November 2013 Newsletter: 06 Pistachio November 2013 Newsletter
June/July 2013 Newsletter: 05 Pistachio June July 2013 Newsletter (2)
May 2013 Newsletter: 04 Pistachio May 2013 Newsletter
March 2013 Newsletter: 03 Pistachio March 2013 Newsletter
February 2013 Newsletter: 02 Pistachio February Newsletter 2013
January 2013 Newsletter: 01 Pistachio January 2013 Newsletter
Weekly Australian climate, water and agricultural update
This weekly update provides up-to-date information on recent and forecast climatic conditions, water availability and commodity price movements.
For the week ending 12 October 2011, rainfall was mostly recorded in eastern Australia. The highest measured total for the week was 92 millimetres at Mt Read on the West Coast of Tasmania. Recent rainfall will benefit crops and pastures in southern New South Wales and Victoria, particularly where short term rainfall deficiencies exist.
Rainfall forecast for the next week could benefit crops and pastures particularly across eastern Australia.
View the latest weekly report from the Murray-Darling Basin Authority:
View the latest weather observations and forecast: