12 September 2018

Information is key, from planning to harvest

Crosshill Farms

Gary Buller farms approx. 12,500 acres just west of Bruce Rock in the Eastern Wheatbelt region of Western Australia. In a normal year Gary grows a mix of wheat, barley, lupins, peas and canola in a rotation next to running a flock of Van Rooy sheep. Gary grew up in this area and members of his extended family farm all around him. This year’s crops are looking exceptionally well after some decent rainfalls in August, to which Gary adds: “I hope we don’t get any frosts in September and with a bit more rain in either September or October we can look forward to some excellent yields I think. If all goes well, harvest will start in November, probably with canola, followed by lupins and cereals.”

Working with Agworld

Gary: “I’ve been with Agworld pretty much since the day they started; I remember buying an iPad when they first came out, especially so I could use Agworld. I use Agworld wherever it makes sense in my operation, but the main thing has been to record what I have done in each paddock. I don’t like to write things down on paper and then often forgetting where my scraps of paper are; having information available in an app makes it so much easier to look back on what I have done when and where.” Next to recording his actuals, Gary has also been recording his rainfall data in Agworld since this feature got added last year: “I used a different app previously, but it stopped being maintained by its makers and all of a sudden, I lost 7 years’ worth of data. By being able to record this data in Agworld, I know that my data is safe and available when I want it to”

Planning ahead

As soon as harvest is finished, planning for next year starts. Gary: “Pretty soon I will start with my planning for next year; the crops I want to plant, the inputs I need, etc. This is another feature in Agworld that I use a lot; it gives me a real good overview of what next year is going to look like and it ensures I can communicate all necessary details to my agronomist, reseller, and bank. Going into a new season with a plan is very important to me and by doing this on the same platform as where I record my actuals, I prevent having to double-enter any information.”

Integrating technology

Gary uses a 60ft DBS planter with a Bourgault 6450 seedcart to plant his crops and a 120ft RoGator to spray them. For this upcoming harvest, a new (second hand) John Deere header has been ordered with a 45ft front. Gary’s son Callen finished school last year and is now working full-time on the family operation as well. Gary: “Callen will be driving the header this year and I am looking forward to get him set up with Agworld as well so that he can enter the harvest records. This is an Agworld feature that we haven’t used yet, but we will be from this harvest onwards. When it comes to adopting Ag Technology on our farm, we have committed to some technologies, whereas in other areas we are taking a backseat for the time being. When we look at investing in our operation, we put our money where we can expect the best ROI. I feel that when we spend money on new technology, it really needs to add value to our operation; my annual Agworld definitely delivers on that premise.”

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