The Liverpool Plains catchment faces a number of natural resource issues including dryland salinity, which has been attributed to removal of native vegetation, an increase in rainfall and the use of long fallow cropping systems. Opportunity cropping, where a crop is sown once the soil profile has been recharged to a suitable level, has been promoted as a more water use efficient system. In this paper, we present results from field trials and APSIM modelling to find if the recommended change to opportunity cropping systems can produce a “win-win” situation, that is increasing profitability whilst at the same time reducing recharge to the groundwater systems that are believed to contribute to dryland salinity.


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