Charles Darwin University horticulture students learn beyond classroom walls

Tony Asis, Senior Research Agronomist and Heather Wallace, Technical Officer

Staff from the Plant Industry Development (PID) gladly received and provided a positive learning experience to horticulture students from Charles Darwin University (CDU). The students were accompanied by their mentors Tania Paul and Emily Hinds during their visit at Berrimah Farm on 30 March 2017. The main objective of their visit was to gain knowledge about plant nutrition, ornamental flowers and nursery nutrition.

The students were briefed about the importance of biosecurity and farm hygiene practices. They got hands on experience when they walked through the foot bath before entering the greenhouse. There they also learned about the use of the aeroponics technique in understanding the physiological process and monitoring nutritional dynamics in mango under greenhouse conditions.

At the horticulture block, the students viewed the latest curcuma pot trial and were given information on the performance of control release fertilisers (CRF) under the Top End climate.  The method for collecting leachate samples from the pot was demonstrated. They also received a hand out showing the relationship between the pH and electrical conductivity of the leachate and the application of CRF.

Moreover, some general topics were discussed which included the use of tissue culture method to achieve disease free plants, nursery management such as pest control and irrigation system and the importance of, and equipment needed, in sterilising potting medium.On behalf of the students, Tania Paul expressed her thanks and appreciation for showing them around the plant nutrition trials and other research work at Berrimah Farm. “The students got a lot out of it”, Tania Paul added. We look forward to meeting with the students again as they plan to visit Coastal Plains Research Farm during the semester.

Figure 2: Heather Wallace (first from left) shared the on-going nutrition studies on curcuma under nursery conditions

Figure 2: Heather Wallace (first from left) shared the on-going nutrition studies on curcuma under nursery conditions.

Last updated: 11 July 2017