The ‘Building the resilience and on-farm biosecurity capacity of the Australian production nursery industry’ (NY15002) project concluded at the end of 2020.
Led by the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (QDAF), this project worked to enhance biosecurity preparedness for Australia’s production nursery industry, by facilitating the development of online resources to assist growers in the management of common pests and diseases, and the delivery of face-to-face workshops and diagnostic capacity.
Highly successful in the delivery of high-quality pest and disease management extension resources, this project also assisted in bolstering the biosecurity capacity of the nursery industry by creating and updating pest-specific contingency plans and completion of the biosecurity simulation exercise relating to Xylella fastidiosa.
Workshops: A total of 28 workshops were completed across the project, attracting 615 attendees across Australia. Attendees who completed the workshop evaluation one-year after the event, indicated they made at least one positive change as a result of the workshop such as increased crop monitoring, increased use of biological control and reduced weed populations.
Webinars: 14 webinars were completed over the life of the project covering topics like climate change on pest populations, pesticide selection for resistance management and root pathogens. All webinars can be viewed on the GIA YouTube channel here.
Diagnostics: Since the project commenced in 2016, over 2,300 samples were received from NIASA and non-NIASA production nurseries. Long term evaluation intimated that: about 90% of respondents found recommendations were relevant to their business, about 85% indicated a moderate or greater improvement in crop health, and about 60% indicated a moderate or greater reduction in management costs.
The success of NY15002 led to the development of the newly contracted ‘Resourcing, supporting, and assessing biosecurity in nursery production’ (NY20000), which seeks to provide greater support to production nurseries wanting to access diagnostic services; all production nursery businesses receive 6 free diagnostic samples each year of the project (2021-2025) through Grow Help Australia. The project will also assess the impact of nursery hygiene practices on pest and disease incidences at point-of-sale and post-planting.
NY20000 will update factsheets and pest management plans produced in previous projects and continue to produce new resources. These will assist Australian production nursery managers implement best management practices to reduce the risk of infestations and crop loss associated with pests and diseases.
Keep an eye out for more information to come.
The ‘Building the resilience and on-farm biosecurity capacity of the Australian production nursery industry’ (NY15002) and ‘Resourcing, supporting, and assessing biosecurity in nursery production’ (NY20000) projects are funded by Hort Innovation using the nursery industry levy and funds from the Australian Government