Can soil organic carbon be increased in a continuous cropping system in the low to medium rainfall zone?


Research organisaton
Funding source

Trial details

Researcher(s) Harm van Rees and Anne Jackman (Cropfacts Pty Ltd), Sarah Noack (Hart Field Site Group) and Jeff Baldock (CSIRO)
Year(s) 2012
Contributor Hart Field Site Group
Trial location(s) Site 5, Hart, SA
Can soil organic carbon be increased in a continuous cropping system in the low to medium rainfall zone? locations

To determine whether soil organic carbon be increased in a continuous cropping system in the low to medium rainfall zone.

Key messages
  • Eight trial sites were established across South Eastern Australia to investigate whether soil organic carbon levels can be increased in no-till farming systems, inclusive of adding nutrients to aid the biological breakdown of stubble into soil organic matter.
  • After three or five years of treatment, no increase in soil organic carbon could be confirmed across four trial sites. However, it is well known that no-till and stubble retention protects the soil from wind and water erosion and over a longer time-frame soil organic carbon levels may increase. But, based on these results it is likely that any potential increase in soil organic carbon will be small.
Lead research organisation Hart Field Site Group
Host research organisation N/A
Trial funding source GRDC CRF00002
Related program N/A

The soil organic carbon trial and extension work was funded by GRDC (project code CRF00002) and DAF (project code AotG1-42).


Other trial partners Cropfacts Pty Ltd and CSIRO
Download the trial report to view additional trial information


Crop type
Treatment type(s)
  • Fertiliser
  • Stubble
  • Stubble: Management
Trial type Experimental
Trial design Replicated

Hart 2012

Sow date Not specified
Harvest date Not specified
Plot size Not specified
Plot replication Not specified
Download the trial report to view additional method/treatment information
Trial source data and summary not available
Check the trial report PDF for trial results.
Observed trial site soil information
Trial site soil testing
Not specified
Soil conditions
Trial site Soil texture
Site 5, Hart, SA Not specified
Derived trial site soil information
Australian Soil Classification Source
Trial site Soil order
Site 5, Hart, SA Chromosol
National soil grid Source
NOTE: National Soil Grid data is aggregated information for background information on the wider area
Actual soil values can vary significantly in a small area and the trial soil tests are the most relevant data where available

Soil properties



Derived climate information

No observed climate data available for this trial.
Derived climate data is determined from trial site location and national weather sources.

Site 5, Hart SA


Some data on this site is sourced from the Bureau of Meteorology

SILO weather estimates sourced from
Jeffrey, S.J., Carter, J.O., Moodie, K.B. and Beswick, A.R. (2001). Using spatial interpolation to construct a comprehensive archive of Australian climate data , Environmental Modelling and Software, Vol 16/4, pp 309-330. DOI: 10.1016/S1364-8152(01)00008-1.