Soil Management in the Central West

Merging soils, people, education and technology.

Soil Management in the Central West

Merging soils, people, education and technology.

Capacity to Deliver -


The issue

Little River Landcare has identified a variety of soil management practices in the landscapes across Central West NSW, and a lack of new soil testing technology that could increase adoption of best practice land management for farmers. Information loss between researchers and landholders is also an ongoing issue and this gap in knowledge and skills is affecting environmental sustainability and production outcomes for many central west farmers.

The solution

Little River Landcare has developed a community engagement project aimed at increasing soil management understanding and awareness of landholders throughout the region. The Soil PET (people, education, technology) project is underway and set to deliver an extensive regional soil testing program that builds landholder knowledge, cross region Landcare group engagement, a national soils data base and awareness of new soil testing technology.  

The heart of the project is based on landholder engagement with a focus on increasing soils knowledge to improve sustainable management decisions. Follow up workshops with skilled soils professionals provide an opportunity for landholders to understand their soil test results (“What the numbers mean”) and receive region specific soil management advice.

The impact

This project has extensive and lasting benefits to landholders and groups regionally as well contributing nationally through soil innovation and technology development. Locally, landholders have the benefit of soil pit workshops that increase their soils knowledge and skill level along with the added benefit of social connection opportunities post Covid. Regionally, this program has enabled contribution to a national soils data base via eSpade and added valuable research towards the development of new soil testing technology via the Mid Infra Red (MIR) process.

Little River Landcare has reinvigorated local and regional landholders with the benefits of Landcare and look to the future of how to continue this process post funding.


Little River Landcare’s Soil PET project has upskilled landholders, local agribusiness representatives, national government representatives and Landcare groups and researchers on their understanding of soil types, structure, texture and chemistry.  

Key facts

  • Strengthening partnerships with landholders, local, regional and national groups.
  • Reinforcing the efficiency, necessity and relevance of Landcare across Central NSW.
  • Soil testing innovation and significance of soil testing for Australian agriculture.
  • Soils data collection to build the national soils data base via eSpade.

Project Partners