“Andrew and I realise what we’re doing now isn’t necessarily for ourselves… it’s for the future generations and it’s our duty as stewards of the land to nurture and protect the soil today!”
Name: Marlee Langfield
Business and/or property name: Wallaringa
Business Partners: Fiancé Andrew
Farm locality/region: Central west NSW
Topography: Average 350m elevation Undulating country with soils are a mixture of eutrophic red chromosols through to areas of lighter sodosol soil types.
Primary Outputs: Cropping grains and oilseeds
Canola seedling 1 week after planting
We are proud that sustainability is front of mind in our everyday lives and decisions on the farm to ensure we don’t to compromise the ability of future generations to make a living off this land.
When we plant our crops we do so by integrating a whole range of sustainable practices: variable rate technology and a direct drilling planting system are the big enablers. Using the previous year’s yield data that our header collects along with soil test results we are able to combine and generate management zones. Management zones represent the different soil types in a paddock and enable us to make informed decisions for every zone rather than a ‘blanket’ decision for the whole paddock. See this video for a visual explanation of management zones.
Spreading Lime at a variable rate
Thanks to precision agricultural technologies and our new generation airseeder we can apply fertiliser at a variable rate across the paddock while direct drilling. During direct drilling, the seed is sown into the stubble of the previous crop without any prior cultivation. In doing this, our germination moisture (which can be marginal during the Australian Autumn) is protected by leaving the soil with minimal disturbance and allowing stubble residues to remain on the surface as good protection against wind and rain.
The drought reiterated the fact that our soil is our greatest asset. Going against the trend to cut and bale harvest stubble residue we made modifications to our header to ensure chaff was evenly spread over the soil to act as a protective layer for the harsh summer. We have seen the benefits of this decision through retained soil moisture and thus even germination at sowing. With the drought now behind us in Cowra and currently experiencing a wetter than normal season, we will continue to learn and endeavour to make sustainable decisions that are the right recipe for each season as none are a carbon copy of the other. We will continue to seek out others who can help us understand our soils as they are the lifeblood of our farm.
Direct drilled Canola emerging nicely and protected by wheat stubble
I’m proud to say that we respect the past but always look to the future identifying and adopting new ways of doing things. We’re working for something greater and we won’t see the full extent of it in our lifetime. The farm will pass onto the next generation and it will then be their time to grow great grains.
"Proud to call myself a rural woman": 24-year-old CEO and farmer Marlee Langfield reflects on her role as a third generation farmer, active community member and rural advocate
Marlee Langfield show the value of Place-Based Leadership skills for rural Australia
First dig at farming and luck shining this young couple's way
Farming Future a Real Option
The Ultimate Guide to a Great Career
Header Image Photographer/Source:
Catherine Forge, Museums Victoria