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Saltland Pasture Redemption Project


Messina Strips Gypsum Road 20.09.2017

To jump straight to information about dryland salinity please click here


To jump straight to information about salt tolerant pastures please click here


Meninge East / Field - Crop & Pasture Walk

This event is being held on Thursday the 27th of September starting at 'Menalpyn' 2396 McIntosh Way, 8.30am through to 1.30pm, lunch included.

Meningie East_Field Crop & Pasture Walk Flyer 27.09.2018

Meningie East _ Field - Crop & Pasture Walk Map & Program

PRINTABLE PDF Meningie East _ Field - Crop & Pasture Walk Flyer(1443 kb)
PRINTABLE PDF Meningie East _ Field - Crop & Pasture Walk Map & Program(347 kb)


Saltland Pasture Redemption Project Site Tour & Local Salinity Trends

This tour is being held on Wednesday the 19th of September starting at the Coomandook Uniting Church Hall Supper Room - 8.30am through to 1.30pm, lunch included. 
Full Program Saltland Redemption Tour 19.09.2018(323 kb)

Flyer & mail out Saltland Redemption Farm Walk  19th September 2018

Summarised Program & Map Saltland Tour 19.09.2018


Project Summary


The Coomandook Saltland Redemption project was initiated by the Coorong Tatiara Local Action Plan and Coomandook Ag Bureau to investigate the application of new developments in the productive use of saline land across Coomandook / Cooke Plains area. This included testing the suitability of new salt tolerant legume species Messina and complimentary salt tolerant pastures in broadacre farming systems. This project followed on from the Dryland Salinity Information Sessions held across the Coorong District Council area in 2016, Three sites have been established at Meningie East, Coomandook, and Cooke Plains.

 Key issues that farmers want to investigate are:

  1. Does Messina grow in the environment?

    2. Can it be productive either as a stand alone species or as part of a pasture mix?


Robust discussion occurred at our Spring 2017 Farm Walk. Producers, Agronomists, NRM & PIRSA Staff, and SARDI Reps were interested in addressing the following questions in regard to Saltland Pasture and Messina establishment, regeneration, and management going forward;

- Staggered seeding of Messina after several rainfall events (suggestion that the salinity concentration in the topsoil may change throughout the season affecting the ability of messina and other salt tolerant pastures to germinate),

- Use of groundcovers to reduce salinity concentration over the summer period in the top soil, plastic vs organic mulch vs groundcover,

- Use of raised beds or mounds to enhance Messina establishment, providing a micro-climate of lower salinity in which to get Messina to germinate.

- Different seeding techniques, treatments, and ongoing management techniques.

Planning Forum was held in March 2018 with participating landholders, agronomists,  seed merchants, and Natural Resources SA Murray Darling Basin and South East. The outcomes and outlines of site plans for 2018 are contained in the report below. Relevant data from the 2017 season in contained in the presentation below.  

PLANNING FORUM REPORT Saltland Redemption Project March 20th 2018(1391 kb) 

Saltland Pasture Redemption Update Presentation 20th March 2018(966 kb)

Tomohawk Bale Shredder used to spread mulch at Cooke Plains

Tomohawk Bale Shredder used to spread mulch

Please click here to access the latest Saltland Pasture Redemption Project Bulletin. This will be regularly updated and placed on this web page. This Bulletin is put together by Project Manager Felicity Turner.

This project is supported by the South Australian Murray-Darling Basin Natural Resources Management Board, the South East Natural Resources Management Board, The Coorong Tatiara Local Action Plan and the Coomandook Agricultural Bureau through funding from the NRM Levies and the Australian Government’s National Landcare Programme. The project also receives valued material and project support from Landmark - Cooke Plains, Heritage Seeds, Platinum Ag - Coorong, and Elders. 


Saltland Pasture Redemption Site Tour 

The first Saltland Pasture Redemption Site Tour was held on Wednesday the 20th of September 2017 with approximately 60 landholders, agronomists, NRM, PIRSA and SARDI staff in attendance. It was a terrific opportunity for a cross fertilisation of ideas.

With funding secured to run this project over another season several ideas were discussed about what aspects of saltland pasture and messina establishment we should look at next such as;

Seeding Messina into established Puccinellia pasture   


Timed seeding of Messina after several rainfall events

Use of ground covers to stop salinity concentration such as; Plastic / Organic mulch / Groundcover

Messina palatability

Messina response to nutrients and trace elements


Use of raised seed beds or mounds

Comparing innoculated vs un-innoculated Messina


Your idea?


Saltland Redemption Farm Walk  20th September 2017 Flyer


Below is a range of information from the day including; the tour booklet, various papers and fact sheets, and presentations from SARDI and Natural Resources SA Murray Darling Basin.

Tour Booklet - Saltland Redemption Farm Walk 20th September 2017(15929 kb)



After lunch presentations were given by;

Ross Ballard - SARDI Rhizobiologist, and David Peck - member of the SARDI Pasture Group  

Messina - a new annual legume for saltland pastures(4209 kb)

Tony Randall - Natural Resources SA Murray Darling Basin, Land & Water Management Team Co-ordinator

Mallee Seeps in the SA Murray Darling Basin NRM Region(1737 kb)



Find here more information about 'Messina' the recently released Salt and Waterlogging Tolerant Pasture Legume.

Please click the link below to link to the Seednet Messina Fact Sheet: 


Please click the link below to link to access a paper by Ross Ballard and David Peck of SARDI 'Messina establishment and management'

Messina establishment and management - Ross Ballard & David Peck(422 kb)



Elders - Heritage Seeds - White Saline Pasture Demonstration Site(596 kb)





Measuring salinity Understanding the numbers(233 kb)


Soil Salinity Sampling Fact Sheet(87 kb)


Soil Salinity ECe crop and pasture tolerance chart(91 kb)



Messina Feed Test 07.09.2017(87 kb)

Scimitar Burr Medic Feed Test 07.09.2017(81 kb)


For more Saltland Pasture information and Fact Sheets that were produced to cover conditions in our region please click this link to return to our Saltland Pastures web page http://www.coorong.sa.gov.au/saltlandpastures


For more information on this project please contact tstrugnell@coorong.sa.gov.au


Natural Resources South East Acknowledgement Statement(257 kb)

Natural Resources SAMDB Connecting Communities Acknowledging Grants Fact Sheet(357 kb)



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Coorong District Council

95-101 Railway Terrace, Tailem Bend SA 5260

PO Box 399, Tailem Bend SA 5260

Call: 1300 785 277


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