Latest Miller move a ‘clear winner’ at Kojonup

23 November 2021

The extra crop clearance provided by a new Miller Nitro 7380 sprayer has been welcomed by the Warburton family at Kojonup for clearing canola flowers when targeting sclerotinia disease in crops and pods during desiccation.

A NEED for greater crop clearance when spraying flowering canola to control sclerotinia disease saw an addition to the Warburton’s Miller sprayer family near Kojonup this season and it came with the bonus of a host of other benefits.

Rob Warburton said the canola can be “six-foot’’ (183 centimetres) when they target the sclerotinia and this was too difficult to clear for their existing Miller Nitro 4315 sprayer, which also hits canola pods during desiccation.

However, the height proved no problem for their new Miller Nitro 7380 sprayer, which offers clearances up to 193cm depending upon tyre sizes.

“The extra clearance was great and we could see the flowers going underneath,’’ Rob said.

They haven’t parted ways with the smaller 4315 sprayer however. It still played a valuable role this season at seeding and for swathing.

“It’s a long season down here,’’ Rob said.

“We do a lot of spray-topping when we are swathing and we can be swathing and harvesting at the same time, even though we mostly direct head (canola) now.’’

Rob and his wife, Jen, operate the 6000-hectare ‘Korellup’ property near Kojonup, cropping 3500ha to canola, wheat and barley whilst running an 18,000-head Merino flock.

Half of the cropping program is devoted to canola and 70 per cent of the area is continuously cropped, following a canola-cereal-canola rotation.

Rob said typically five to six spray passes would be undertaken over paddocks to control mainly weeds and diseases.

He said annual ryegrass was the major weed targeted, with some resistance to glyphosate emerging, however most herbicides continued to be effective on their weed populations.

The Warburtons also have been long-term users of chaff carts at harvest to help limit weed seedset, and which have proved valuable to sustain the sheep flock, especially during autumn.

Despite the wet conditions this season, Rob said the new Miller Nitro 7380 sprayer, delivered by McIntosh & Son at Katanning in March, had been highly impressive.

“We are tramline farming and we have bogged a little bit lately, but it has managed to get through.’’

“The traction control has been very good and it has heaps of power.’’